NZ Open. Dimitrios Papadatos Wins.

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Dimitrios Papadatos wins the New Zealand Open at The Hills down on the South Island.

Papadatos impresses with NZ Open win

Dimi Papadatos / Getty Images

Dimi  looked solid throughout the final round firing a -6 under par 66 to finish with a tournament total of 18-under par, and lift the trophy. This was his maiden Tour victory and it took some concentration to keep it in sight;

“I just wanted to concentrate and not get too overwhelmed with what was happening. It’s awesome, great bunch of guys and they’re very supportive. We all try and beat each other but at the end of the week, there’s no hard feelings. I kept believing in myself and telling myself I could do it, the whole way round. But there’s always that thing, deep down wondering if you really can.”

“I didn’t really think at the start of the week I would have had my name on the trophy, but as the week started to progress, I thought there was a good chance so I’m pretty happy. Obviously some great players have won this event, it’s a massive honour. I wouldn’t have told you at the start of the week I was capable of this. I’m really happy.”

Leading Kiwi was Mark Brown, who finished in second place, shooting a final round -3 under par 69, but at -14 under par was way off the pace;

“It was just frustrating that I didn’t have the A-game today like I played a couple of the other days. The chances I did give myself I didn’t convert and it was only really towards the end that I made a couple of birdies so Dimi played great. He holed the putts when he needed to. It’s all about winning and particularly this tournament, so I take no solace in finishing second at all. It wasn’t what I wanted so it’s just really disappointing.”

“The young guys now have got no fear. They all putt great, their short games are great so when they do make a mistake off tee to green they’ll save it and not only that, they’ll hole putts.”

Another Kiwi, David Klein was in third place at -13 under par, he shot a last round -5 under par 67.

New Zealand amateur Jordan Bakermans finished the tournament as the leading amateur to claim the Bledisloe Cup. Unfortunately this was after Southland No.1 Vaughan McCall was disqualified for signing an incorrect scorecard.

Jordan emphasized what an honor this was for him;

“It is a huge honour to win this trophyIt was my goal at the start of the week and while I would have loved to make the cut this is a pretty cool honor to take home from this tournament.”

NZ Open. Young Aussie In Charge.

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Young Aussie  Dimitrios Papadatos has taken charge of the New Zealand Open Championship,  by grabbing a one shot lead to take into the final round.

Young Aussie aims to spoil the Kiwi party


Dimi Papadatos / Getty

Dimi shot a third round -5 under par 67, to lead the NZ Open at -12 under par. He said he remained calm under the pressure;

“I was surprisingly calm out there, I thought I would be more nervous with the big crowds. I started to get it going and I felt pretty comfortable. At first it was a bit overwhelming but you start to get used to it, you start to enjoy it more. “It will be good, to be leading], it’s what I have come here for so I am looking forward to it.”

Thousands of Kiwi’s will be flocking to The Hills, and will be hoping for a Kiwi champion, Mark Brown hopes not to disappoint them. Mark is currently in second place following his third round of -6 under par 66 had him tied at that score with another KiwiRichard Lee, who had a more modest third round of -2 under par 70.

Mark was pretty happy with his performance today;

“I was sort of getting a little bit behind after the front nine I’d played really nicely but I turned it around really nicely. I just made one bad swing on 17 and made double, but part from that, she was all pretty plain sailing. I putted beautifully the whole back nine, holed some good length putts too, not exactly gimmes. It’s the best I’ve felt all year. Hopefully it carries on tomorrow.”

Richard was in a completely different mood;

“I am struggling with my ball striking and I would love to go out there and tear it apart.”

Ashley Hall had a -6 under par 66 third round, which took him into fourth place on his own at -10 under par.

Kiwi Mark Brown Wins a Place in The Open

Mark Brown

Mark Brown / getty

Kiwi Mark Brown shot a course-record 62 on Wednesday to win the Australasian regional qualifying tournament for The Open at Muirfield in July this year.

Mark finished the two-round International Final Qualifying tournament at Melbourne’s Kingston Heath Golf Club at -10 under par, capturing one of three qualifying places available to the 72-strong field. Australian Steven Jeffress finished at -9 under par after a second round of 67 and compatriot Stephen Dartnall shot second round 69 to both finish at -8 under par and to claim the other two qualifying spots.

An Eagle and eight birdies in Mark’s round on Wednesday helped him to beat Ian Poulter’s course record of 64 set at the 2012 Australian Masters.

Mark said he knew early on that it was a serious round;

” Yesterday I was a fair way back, so today I wasn’t really thinking about it too much,  I just went out and tried to enjoy it. I made six birdies in the first nine, then it got serious and it wasn’t so much fun anymore,  but it’s massive. I love this place and I played well here in November. I’ve got so much respect for the place, it’s quite a thrill to hold the course record. If there’s one major you want to play for me, this would be it. I hope it’s a big thrill, it’s not every major New Zealand has someone playing. I hope we get another couple in, Cambo and maybe someone else through qualifiers.”

 Steven Jeffress  at 37 years of age will tee it up in his first Major championship thanks to a composed round, Steven said he was impressed with his achievement;

“It’s pretty impressive, it probably hasn’t even sunk in yet, it’s going to be great, it’s going to be unbelievable. I had a number that I wanted to get to, 10-under. I thought if I get to that then it’s going to be competitive. I had 2-under around the front nine and then I parred through to 15 which I was pretty frustrated at. I said to my caddy that we have to do something here because only the top-3 get in and then I birdied 15 and 16.”

Stephen Dartnell had two solid rounds, and is was good enough to get him qualified;

“I started off a bit scratchy actually, I was 1-over after six then made a few birdies and just played solid from there on in. It wasn’t quite as good as yesterday but it was enough, I guess. I have never played a major before so will be a good learning experience, to go there and obviously try and play well.”

The Australasian tournament is one of a series of regional events on five continents that give players a chance to qualify for The Open Championship at Muirfield from July 18 to 21.

BMW New Zealand Open, Won by Aussie Amateur, Jake Higginbottom

Special victory for Higginbottom

Jake Higginbottom/pga,

Aussie Amateur Jake Higginbottom was won the BMW New Zealand Open at the Clearwater Resort, with a final round of  -5 under par, 67, and a tournament total of -7 under par. Jake had to fight hard to repel the challenge from fellow Aussie’s Jason Norris and Peter Wilson, who both finished tied for second at -6 under par.

Jake made history by becoming the first amateur golfer for 56 years to be crowned New Zealand Open champion with his one-shot victory in the BMW-sponsored tournament hosted by Christchurch at Clearwater Resort on Sunday. The 19 year-old Ausssie  from New South Wales, started the final round three shots adrift of Mark Brown, New Zealand’s main hope of ending a drought of nine years since a Kiwi held aloft the winner’s silverware, the Brodie Breeze Trophy.

Jake was happy to be beating the professionals, to know he was a good as them;

“It is a great feeling and it means a lot me. It is good to come over here and play against the professionals and know that I am as good as them. Mum was crying and Dad was just happy that I made a good speech. I actually talked about the 18th with my mates before the final round. They asked me what I would do if I had a one shot lead down the last and I told them I would just rip one down there.I was most nervous when I had that short putt on the last but it was nice to see that drop and to win is really good. It was good to be a couple behind after the front nine because I knew that I had to make birdies. That is what I did so it was good.”

Mark Brown summed up his disappointing day with the putter, he finished fourth after his +1 over par last round;

” I played well enough, I played beautifully for first 10 holes and didn’t miss a shot.But I only really holed one putt and had 34 for the day which is never going to win a golf tournament. I don’t know, I didn’t start them on line so there’s a technical issue there. I gave myself a lot of chances and think I hit 33 greens for the last 36 holes so that’s a lot of chances I didn’t take. It’s frustration and probably been a career thing for me so I’ve got to get better if I want to reach the goals I want to meet. I’ll go away, work hard, and try and get better.”

So New Zealand will have to wait another year before the chance of having another Kiwi winning the BMW New Zealand Open.

Talisker Australian Open. Great Scott Eases Past Poor Poults Performance

Golf Australia     

Adam Scott played a great last round to ease past a poor performance from Poults at the Talisker Australian Open at the Kingston Heath Golf Club on Sunday.  Adams final round of  -5 under-par 67 gave him a four shot win over defending champion Ian Poulter. Adam described the week as perfectly satisfactory;

Satisfaction is the perfect word to describe this week, it is probably the only tournament of the year maybe one other where I have put four solid rounds together. It was great to be part of it. The golf Ian and I played over the past two days was the highest standard of golf there is. I can’t tell you how good it was. My swing was good all week but today it was very good. I just tried to play instinctive golf. I took my chances on the front 9 and then just tried to hang on on the back nine.”


Adam Scott / Bruce Young/

Ian Poulter made too many mistakes today, the beaten defending champion was disappointed with his performance, but complimentary of Adam’s solid round;

“It has been a great week, I am disappointed because I led into the final round and haven’t won but it has been a great week. Adam played very solid and forced me into a couple of mistakes. I made a fateful error on the 17th  {he missed a putt form two feet} when I was standing over Adam’s line but he played a lovely round of five under”

I said yesterday that the winner from these two would be the one who made the least mistakes, Ian Poulter made bogey on two par fives, for a man of his caliber that is not a mistake, it is criminal negligence.

New Zealander’s Mark Brown and Gareth Paddison tied for third place, eight shots behind Adam Scott’s winning score.


New Zealand PGA Championship in Arrowtown.

Kiwi Mark Brown has the outright lead after day one of the New Zealand PGA Championship in Arrowtown. The mornings play had been delayed by an hour and a half due to fog, but as the weather warmed up so did the 37-year-old’s golf, as he birdied 14, 16, 17 and 18, before sinking an eagle putt at the par five first to rocket up the leaderboard. Mark, who hasn’t played in New Zealand since 2007, or on the PGA Tour of Australasia since he won the Order of Merit in 2008, commented on the early morning cool temperatures;

“Once the jumpers came off and you started to warm up it was magnificent but early on the ball wasn’t going very far through the air so you had to judge that a little bit.”

Talking about losing his European Tour card, Mark thought it may work in his favour;

“I’m actually looking forward to playing less, with a bit more time off to do some fitness stuff. The body’s in pretty bad shape. Obviously losing your card in Europe’s not ideal but I’ve looked at it as a positive. I can spend some time at home and get fit and do some meaningful practise. To play at home in front of your family and friends down here is just a dream and I’ve really missed it. It’s just fantastic to be home.”

Starting today’s tournament were 132 professionals who teed off in the hope of winning the trophy.  The top 60 will make the cut today and progress through the weekend to play for the NZ PGA Championship.