16 Oct 2020 | Amateur golf |

Bosio makes history, Smylie dominates Keperra

by Martin Blake

2020 Keperra Bowl champions Elvis Smylie and Justice Bosio
2020 Keperra Bowl champions Elvis Smylie and Justice Bosio

Justice Bosio made history and Elvis Smylie wrote his own remarkable story as the Queensland pair won the prestigious Keperra Bowl titles today.

Bosio, the teenager from Caboolture Golf Club, became the winner of the first-ever female event at the storied Queensland amateur tournament in a triumph she rated "my biggest by far".

Meanwhile the left-handed Smylie, already the national junior champion and still just 18, not only went back-to-back in the men’s event but won by an astonishing 13 shots after a stunning 62 today.

Bosio, just 16 and in year 11 schooling on the Sunshine Coast, won the South Australian Junior Amateur and the South Australian Junior Masters earlier this year.

She won the inaugural Keperra women’s event by a shot from Hye Jun Park and Minji Kweon, who played in the final group together.

Bosio posted five-under-par after two closing 67s to go with opening rounds of 73 and 76, and waited to see if it was enough. But Park and Kweon both bogeyed the 72nd hole and left her with the victory as she prepared for a playoff.

Bosio has had a consistent year that includes not only her first senior title win in Adelaide, but a win at the Queensland Junior Masters, runner-up in the Queensland Stroke Play and fifth in the Queensland Amateur, and third at the Katherine Kirk Classic.

Ironically, she only just made the cut at five-over-par before a chat with her father unlocked the secret. "After the second round, I went home with my Dad, and I have all these videos from all my lessons on Coach Now, from Richard (Woodhouse, her coach).

"I just looked at those and I found that my position in the backswing was so open. That's why I was hitting it everywhere. I worked on fixing that and that's why it went straight!"

Bosio began the final round five shots back and focused on shot-by-shot. "Every birdie I got was a bonus," she said. "I managed to get to five-under. It was a bit of a nail-bitter watching the last group come in but I managed to get the win!"

Smylie closed out the men’s with a stunning 62 that was even better than his opening round of 64 and left him at 25-under par after his rounds of 64-71-66-62. Starting out with a five-shot lead, he obliterated the field with a 10-under round today that is his best ever; on the day, it was the best round in the men's field by six shots.

Fellow-Queenslanders Chris Crabtree and national amateur champion Jed Morgan were runners-up at 12-under par.

Smylie, the son of former tennis champion Liz Smylie, also won the Queensland Stroke Play Championship this year and is establishing himself as one of the best young talents in the country. He made the cut at the 2019 Australian Open and finished just outside the top 30, playing on an invitation.

Keperra is his happy place for now, having won in 2019 and 2020. "I just love coming back here every year," he said. "When we play Keperra Bowl it's always in really good nick. It was just a magical week this week. I'm really grateful."

Smylie knew early that he had it won, but he did not relent all day.

"I just wanted to get past 20 (under)," he said. "So at least have five-under for the day, but I knew Jed and Lawry were going to come strong at me. I tried to stick with my own game and it worked out really well. Not much went wrong today!"

Coming up the last, his playing partners were encouraging him to go even lower.

"It's great. Jed and Lawry were awesome. They were really supportive, saying 'keep going, keep going'. It's great to have guys like that pushing me on. I got to 10, which is my lowest score ever. I'm lucky that it worked out."

Keperra Bowl women's result

Keperra Bowl men's result

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