Date: August 22, 2015
Author: Bernie Pramberg

Bransdon a two-shot leader at Brookwater

Victorian David Bransdon will take a two-shot lead and a stress-free attitude into Sunday’s final round of the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater.

“Stress-free golf at Brookwater is good because this course is relentless. It can tear you apart,’’ said Bransdon. “I feel comfortable leading the tournament and, more importantly, comfortable with where my game is at the moment.’’

Bransdon’s third round 67 took him to the front on a day when seven players either led or shared the lead at some stage. He is at nine-under, two strokes ahead of New South Welshman Rohan Blizard who also shot a five-under 67.

A further shot adrift are Victorian Michael Choi, who carded 69, and Perth’s Michael Sim (70).

The feature of Bransdon’s play has been his ball-striking which he showcased on the par-5, 17thhole, with a booming 300m drive followed by an exquisite 6-iron to within five metres. He missed the eagle putt, but tapped-in for birdie.

“My putting has been the pain-in-the-butt of my 20-years as a professional, but it is getting better,’’ laughed Bransdon. “I putted much better today than I did on the previous two days…”

The 41-year old is a prolific pro-am winner but has also been a consistent tournament performer. He had top-20 finishes at last year’s Australian Open and PGA Championships and his wins include the West Australian PGA Championship and the 2013 Heritage Classic in Melbourne.

“I’ve three young kids back home in Sale and they love it when I bring a trophy home,’’ he said.

Known as somewhat of a firebrand in his younger days, Bransdon said he had mellowed and learned to accept bad breaks on the golf course.

Blizard’s effort to shoot a second straight 67 was outstanding. He notched six birdies today with the only blemish on his card a bogey on the par-4, 10thhole.

Sim and Choi played consistently to be within three shots of the lead while experienced Kiwi Mark Brown is one stroke back after a third round 70.

Victorian Rory Bourke, who had been on top of the leaderboard for the opening two rounds, is within striking distance at four-under with Queenslander Ray Beaufils and Aaron Townsend (NSW).

Bourke’s 73 included a superbly struck 8-iron to within half a metre of the flag on the 167m, par-3, fifth hole which carried a $50,000 hole-in-one prize.

Matthew Millar, who started the day one shot off the lead, faded with a 77 while Gavin Flint also dropped off the pace with a 75.

Leading amateur is Queenslander Jake McLeod who equalled the best round of the day with a 67 to be at three-under after 54 holes.

McLeod, 21, showed plenty of character to bounce back from a double-bogey on his second hole to birdie four of the next six holes.

“I just kept in play off the tee and rolled in a lot of putts,’’ he said.

“I rolled in a few 15 to 20 footers and also holed out for a bunker on the 12th.’’

McLeod won the 2012 Queensland Amateur Championship and was runner-up in the event the following year.


9-under: D Bransdon (vic)

7-under: R Blizard (NSW)

6-under: M Choi (Vic), M Sim (WA)

5-under: M Brown (NZ)

4-under:  R Beaufils (Qld), A Townsend (NSW), R Bourke (Vic).