03 Nov 2022 | Amateur golf |

Bennett begins Women's Amateur Asia-Pacific in style

by Dane Heverin

Kelsey Bennett.

Kelsey Bennett is one shot off the lead after the first round of the Women's Amateur Asia-Pacific following a five-under par round of 67 that included six birdies at Siam Country Club in Thailand.

Bennett, who finished runner-up at last year's edition in Abu Dhabi, is in a share of second place alongside local Natthakritta Vongtaveelap courtesy of some brilliance with the putter and supreme consistency with her irons, while Malaysia's Liyana Durisic leads.

"Holed some longer putts today, which was good," Bennett said. "I hit 17 greens, so actually could have been better than five-under, but I'll definitely take it. Hit plenty of fairways and hit plenty of greens.

"I only missed a couple (of putts) on some tricky downhill sliding putts, but most of them I missed in some pretty good spots, so I think that's the key is keeping it to the right side of the flag."

The Mollymook product exceeded her own personal targets for the day and she believes sticking them to could prove to be the winning formula.

"My goal for today was 2-under on each nine, which I did on both and then one better on the front, which was my back nine," Bennett said. "Yeah, stick to my processes and I think just try and do the 2-under each nine and hopefully get me across the line."

Bennett is also seeking to ride the wave of momentum created by her club mate at St. Michael's Golf Club, Harrison Crowe with his Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship triumph on Sunday.

"Same club, same coach," she said. "I've known him for quite some time now. He's really good. His dad was actually still here watching us, so it was nice to have that Aussie support."

Justice Bosio was the next best of the Australians with a two-under par round placing her in a tie for 11th.

The Golf Australia Women's Order of Merit winner went bogey free as she made two birdies, while the Golf Australia Girls' Order of Merit champion, and fellow Queenslander, Sarah Hammett was the only other Australian to break par.

Hammett's one-under par round included three birdies and she sits tied 17th.

Maddison Hinson-Tolchard was very consistent with the Oklahoma State University carding only one birdie and one bogey in her even-par effort.

Caitlin Peirce ended the day two-over par after submitting a colourful scorecard of five birdies, three bogeys and two double bogeys, while Kirsten Rudgeley shot a three-over par round.


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