18 Mar 2022 | Professional golf |
Amateur Crowe and Collyer lead NSW Open
By Golf NSW
Harrison Crowe shot a second, straight 64 at Concord today to put himself in a share of the lead with Victorian pro Blake Collyer at the Golf Challenge NSW Open, with a groundbreaking victory in sight for the St Michael’s amateur.
The 20-year-old completed another “pretty cruisy” bogey-free round when his birdie putt from 20 feet down the hill at the par-four ninth hole today trickled down and just missed the hole, leaving him a tap-in for a seven-under round that takes him to 14-under overall, tied with Collyer. The Melburnian had earlier blazed a stunning 62 in the benign conditions, Concord again being picked apart by the top players with no wind to protect it.
Four players – Deyen Lawson, Dimi Papadatos, Jarryd Felton and Jordan Zunic – are at 12-under par and two shots back having all shot 66 today.
Crowe has come through the Golf NSW elite programs and won prolifically, including the most recent state amateur title, so he is no shrinking violet. Asked if he was thinking in the back of his mind about a win, he said: “Absolutely. It’s at the front of the mind, not the back of the mind. I came out here this week not to just make the cut or a top-10. I wanted to win. I’ve put myself in a position to do that and I’ve just got to take it as it comes and keep playing the same golf I’ve been playing.”
Only two amateurs have won the NSW Open this century – Rick Kulacz in 2006 and Ben Eccles in 2015.
Crowe is in no hurry to turn professional but his golf has been plainly of pro standard this week. Today he bombed the ball off the tee taking advantage of his length and missed just one green in regulation – the third, where he got up-and-down anyway. In amongst that he rolled in seven birdie putts but his best fist pump came at the 13th, where he holed a longish par-saver. “In the back of my mind, I was like ‘I’m bogey-free, I’m thinking I don’t want to three-putt here’. That’s a pretty bad thought to have. Just hit it, knock it in. It’s nice to see it drop.”
He will be in the final group tomorrow with Collyer, 25, who rollicked his way around in a tournament-low 62 with eight birdies and an eagle at the par-four fifth hole, when he jarred his wedge shot from 79 metres. “I was aiming a bit left of the flag, and it kind of came out going on the flag and it went once bounce and in for eagle,” he said.
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