It was a triple treat for golf fans during the opening round of the 2015 NSW Open Golf Championship at Stonecutters Ridge Golf Club today.
NSW professional Darren Beck, Victoria Amateur Ben Eccles and Hayden Beard of New Zealand all equaled the course record of 64 set in the first round of last year’s Championship by Victorian Steve Jones.
The opening round was a day set for low scores. Warm weather and very light winds left the Stonecutters Ridge course almost defenceless.
Victorian amateur Ben Eccles got off to a great start beginning with birdies on his first two holes. Despite a bogey on the Par-3 6th hole, he turned in 3-under par 33. Things got red hot on the back when he rifled a 3-iron to 25 foot on the 10th and then holed the eagle putt.
“I had a good feeling when I eagled the 10th,” Eccles says. “I knew I was on then.” I hit it real close on 14th and birdied 15th to get to 7-under par, and then I thought I could go real low here.”
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Eccles had his chance at the course record, his three metre eagle putt on the last just slipped by and he ended tapping in for a birdie 4, and a back nine score of 31.
Eccles must find the NSW Open Championship agrees with his golf. It’s not his lowest round in the tournament either.
“I’ve gone this low before, a couple of years ago I had 62 in the NSW Open (at Castle Hill Country Club during the 2013 NSW Open Golf Championship), so I’ve got a good vibe about the NSW Open.”
New South Wales professional Darren Beck was pleased with his first round effort.
“64 is a good start, I’m really happy with it,” Beck Says. “The course is in great condition; the greens are superb.”
Kiwi Beard Eagled the 18th on his way to a share of the course record.
“I started with four on the trot throughout the back (the course front nine) and only made one bogey.”
“It’s good to come to a course where there are nice greens. It played really nicely and we’re lucky with the conditions,” Beard says.
Kiwi amateur Tae Koh stands a shot behind after a neat 7-under par 65
Heavy afternoon rain and a hint of lightning about left officials with little choice but to stop play leaving a number of players with a long wait in the clubhouse until the weather cleared.
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Despite the lengthy rain delay New South Wales Amateur Daniel Gale finished with a well constructed 7-under par 65. A simple bogey on the 6th (his 15th) was followed by a tap in birdie on the very next hole. His 5 metre putt on the 9th (his 18th) to join the course record holders lipped out.
Professionals Ewan Porter and Tim Hart carded matching 7-under par 65’s to join Gale and Koh to complete a day of low scoring and high quality golf.
Coming out to Stonecutters Ridge to enjoy the action? Then take a picture of yourself (or your mates) enjoying the event and use the hashtag #DEFININGLEGENDS or #NSWOPEN and post it on Facebook HERE or Instagram. We'd love to see your faces.
The 2015 New South Wales Open Golf Championship will be played at Stonecutters Ridge Golf Club from 12 to 15 November 2015. The Championship forms part of the 2015 Australasian PGA Tour schedule. ENTRY IS FREE. For more information visit: www.nswopen.com
The NSW Open Golf Championship – Defining Legends Since 1931