Shellharbour’s Danielle Vasquez and Queensland’s Steven Cox lead the Women’s NSW Strokeplay Championship and NSW Medal after round one at Royal Canberra and Gungahlin Lakes Golf Clubs in the Australian Capital Territory.
Cox shot a sublime six under par 66 that included five birdies and an eagle. The only blemish on the card was a lone bogey on his opening hole of the day.
Behind Cox is a bunch players in second place including Royal Canberra’s Charlie Cameron, Kieren Jones of Killara, Josh Gadd of Concord and Alexander Henderson of Avondale. England’s Gian-Marco Petrozzi, Canada’s Joey Savoie and New Zealand’s Logan Inia round out the group at four under par.
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In the Women’s NSW Strokeplay, Vasquez leads by a shot from Nambucca Head’s Darcy Habgood. In third place is Tura Beach’s Casey Cook, Korea’s Ina Yoon, the Kiwi pair of Carmen Lim & Caryn Khoo, and Malaysia’s Ashley Lau Jen Wen.
Vasquez was thrilled with her first round effort around the Challenging Royal Canberra layout.
“It felt really good out there today,” She smiled. “I had my first bogey on the fourth, but backed it up with a birdie on the sixth hole,
“On the back nine I started holing putts, and here I am, finished at three under,” she smiled.
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Vasquez said she had been playing well of late, but the results weren’t reflecting how well she felt she had been playing. It came together for her today, and her name at the top of the leaderboard was a testament to her self-belief.
“At the Avondale medal last week I didn’t go too well and the week before I had six over & two over at the Aussie Am,”
“I knew within myself I would have a good score soon, and it came today,” she said.
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Vasquez has been working for the last four or five months at the Links Shellcove, and now spends most mornings practising before starts duties in the Pro shop.
“I probably have less time to practice now, but it has become more purposeful,
“I’m going through my pre-shot routine on every shot, and working hard at it,
“My coaches Dave Sadd and Dennise Hutton have been great; they are doing an excellent job,”
“I can’t thank them enough, she laughed.
Vasquez, who left school last year to pursue her love of the game, hasn’t decided on a career path. However, the idea of a PGA traineeship is on the horizon for the 18-year-old.
“I want to play more amateur golf at the moment, so I’m still on the fence,
“But I’ve got a job now, I have got some money to come to these tournaments. I feel more confident about my golf, so depending on how I go, I would like to see if I can start a traineeship in the next year or so,” Vasquez smiled.