Date: January 15, 2016
Author: Dave Tease, Golf NSW

Tight finishes mark matchplay start

The NSW presence at the Australian Amateur Championships has been trimmed away as the match play rounds began at the Metropolitan Golf Club.

Soaring temperatures and strong winds one day, followed by rain, and sleet the next day has been the pattern all week.

The testing conditions finally got the better of some in the do or die rounds after 15 Men and 5 Women qualified for the knockout stage. Just seven men and four women are left in contention for the respective titles.

A couple of gutsy last gasp wins and two dominant efforts have highlighted the afternoon; Celina Yuan dominating in her 8/7 win over Brooke Hamilton of New Zealand, and Austin Bautista proving too good for Wales’ Jack Davidson, winning 5/4.

“The Australian Open experience has really helped. I kept my head in the right place today. I just imagined every shot out there was for me to get into the Open,” Bautista said.

Travis Smyth and Harrison Endycott, who have been room mates for the last two weeks have been posting identical results since arriving in Victoria. The qualifying scores and first round match play seems was no different.

“We tied for 9th at The Master of the Amateurs, tied at even par for the medal and we both won on the last this afternoon,” Smyth laughed.

“We hope we can keep going because we’re on opposite sides of the draw so we could end up meeting in the final. It’s perfect,” Endycott added.

Muswellbrook’s Dylan Perry was involved in a tight battle against John Cameron. The match never being more than one up all day.

“It was a really tight match. I made the putts I needed to in the end and I can’t wait to get out there and do it all again,” Perry Said.

Other first round winners in the men's draw were Corey Jones, Joshua Armstrong, and Charles Pilon, a former Wagga junior, who was the medallist after the stroke play rounds.

For a couple of Golf NSW players however, the matchplay rounds meant dissapointment and an early end to their tournament. 

Kevin Yuan, after setting the amateur course record at Metropolitan in Round 1 was bundled out of the matchplay by Grant Forrest of Scotland, while Jason Hong was beaten on the 20th hole.

The diminishing light got the better of the women’s matches, with a number of them left on the course when play was called.

Celina Yuan has sent a message to the remaining women in the field with her 8/7 win, while Hanna Green won her match against Kristalle Blum.

Doey Choi and Chizuru Ueda are to complete their matches at 8.00am in the morning.