19 Jun 2023 | Amateur golf |

Crowe heads big Aussie contingent at British Amateur

by Australian Golf Media

Harrison Crowe is not short of inspiration as he prepares to tee it up in two of golf’s biggest and most prestigious championships. He's one of 14 Australians who will contest the British Amateur Championship starting this evening in England, joining Adam Brady, Joseph Buttress, Phoenix Campbell, Quinnton Croker, Billy Dowling,, Abel Eduard, Harry Goakes, Josh Greer, Jeffrey Guan, Kai Komulainen, Connor McDade, Ali Rachid and Jasper Stubbs.

The strokeplay section, with a field of 288 starters, will be played across two courses, Southport & Ainsdale and Hillside, the venue for Aussie Bryden McPherson's 2011 victory which will be the matchplay competition host. Next month, Crowe will play in The Open at Royal Liverpool, courtesy of his victory in the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship last October. Up for grabs is the Claret Jug that another Australian, Cameron Smith from Brisbane, lifted in 2022. Over the years, Australia has had many successes on the links of the UK, from Peter Thomson and Kel Nagle to Greg Norman and Ian Baker-Finch, but it is the current Champion Golfer of the Year that Sydney's Crowe, 21, is most keen to emulate. In another perk of that victory in Thailand last year, Crowe was invited to this year’s Masters Tournament, where he played a practice round with Smith. He sees a little of himself in his fellow Australian and looks up to him. “Even apart from the mullet that we’ve both got, I can see some similarities,” smiled Crowe.

“Hearing how he came through the amateur system in Australia, the way he played and the results he got, I can relate to him.

"People close to him at that time say he was a real competitor and that he hated losing. He’s got that grit and he has shown it multiple times on tour. “I am a bit like him, but I would love to be more so.

"What he did at The Open last year was incredible. And having that practice round with him at Augusta National enabled me to see just how well he chips and putts. It’s amazing. He’s got the best short game I’ve ever seen.” Nor was Smith the only big name with whom Crowe rubbed shoulders at Augusta. In his first two rounds, he played with former champion Larry Mize and fellow Australian Min Woo Lee. In practice, he was joined by compatriots Adam Scott and Jason Day. Crowe is especially grateful to Scott, who has been hugely supportive since they met at the Japan Open last year.

“Whenever I see him, he takes the time to chat, offer a few words of wisdom and reassure me that I deserve to be out there,” he added.

“He's watched me play, he knows my game and he says ‘mate, just keep doing what you’re doing’. Coming from a guy like him, that’s pretty cool.” Last year, Crowe did not progress beyond the stroke play qualifying.

This time, he is determined to reach the match play stages because it is a format that brings out the best in him.

“When I need to step up or grind it out, I do what  I need to do,” he said.

“That’s why I love match play so much.  I feel like I’m such a competitor. I like to put myself in a position and, when I do, I really believe in myself." Hillside is situated in Southport as part of a fine stretch of coastal links on ‘England’s Golf Coast’.

The venue has hosted many amateur and professional tournaments in its illustrious history, including the 2022 Cazoo Classic on the DP World Tour and Final Qualifying for The Open on numerous occasions .

The full field for the British Amateur Championship can be viewed here.

Harrison Crowe will be one of 14 Australians at the mens British Amateur Championship
Harrison Crowe will be one of 14 Australians at the mens British Amateur Championship

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