Date: January 10, 2019
Author: Kirsty Wrice

Kim makes a charge at AMOTA

Grace Kim and Keita Nakajima have taken the respective leads heading into tomorrow's final round of the Australian Master of the Amateurs at Royal Melbourne.

Kim, 18, distanced herself from the 48-woman field with three birdies in her opening 12 holes but surrendered most of that advantage by playing the final six holes four over par.

“I played well till the 13th,” Kim said after the round.

“I put myself in a bad position in the bunker, then made a couple of bogies to finish off the round, but I’m pretty proud of myself the way I hung in there.”

Kim signed for a one-over-par 73 to hold a two-shot advantage with one day to play and will be joined by NSW state teammate Steph Kyriacou and Victoria’s Julienne Soo in the final group, after that duo carded matching three-over-par 75s.

In the men's championship, a late surge from World No.1 amateur Justin Suh means an exciting final round showdown awaits, featuring Japan’s Keita Nakajima, Victorian Andrew Lautee and American Matthew Wolff.

Nakajima, who is preparing to defend his #AusAm title next week, produced a steady two-under-par 70 to reclaim the lead and a two-shot buffer but will feel the heat from the international charge.

Suh, a senior at the University of Southern California, roared back into the mix after a fine six-under-par 66 saw him claw 16 spots up the leaderboard.

Recently crowned Vic Am champion Lautee will round out the final group after an impressive three-under-par back nine put him in equal third with Wolff at four under after 54-holes.

Canada’s Joey Savoie and NSW Open low amateur Blake Windred remain within striking distance, three shots back from Nakajima after rounds of 71 and 70 respectively.

Friday’s final round starts at 7:30am with the last group teeing off at 1:40pm. Follow scores here.