Port Kembla’s Chris Campbell has made it back-to-back Crowns, while Moore Park’s Lucie Quilliam claimed her first Golf NSW Major title in an exciting final day at the Srixon NSW Mid Amateur Championship.
Campbell, who started the day tied at three over alongside local hope Bradley Germon, made it a procession in the end, winning by a remarkable six shots.
And it didn’t take long for the former member of the Japanese tour to stamp his authority over his competitors when the final round got underway. An unwelcome bogey on the second was soon erased with four straight birdies over the ensuing holes to jump to a commanding lead.
With a buffer that got to five shots by the halfway mark, the back nine became a procession, despite Campbell dropping a couple of shots late in the round.
“It was exciting, but I was very happy with the way I played today,” Campbell said after the win. “The first two days were a bit scrappy but somehow I turned it around today and played really well.”
That ‘somehow’ was the key. With a pedigree like Campbell’s it was only going to be a matter of time before he found something.
“I had a bit of a sore back and I don’t think i was moving properly the first two rounds. I worked it out; I hit two shots in a row just after the turn and remembered.
“When I used to play a lot I had a lot of triggers: You would feel something on the day.
“These days I don’t get the triggers as often, but today I got it, and suddenly I felt I knew what I was doing out there.”
With back-to-back titles now under his belt, the thought of a three-peat at Yarrawonga next June is now firmly in the Port Kembla golfer’s mind.
“I think I have to. I’m quite happy playing around my home track on Saturday, but I better make the effort,” he grinned.
Quilliam, in contrast, started the final round of the women’s section with a comfortable four-shot buffer, had to fight all the way.
Comealla’s Sua Laird made a move early, erasing her lead to just a shot within the first four opening holes.
Quilliam, however, held her nerve, and with a two-putt bogey on the last, eventually prevailing by two.
The Moore Park Club Champion was a relieved woman post round.
“It was up and down round ; put it that way,” Quilliam smiled. ” I really did my best to mess it up on the 18th but got away with it.”
“That clutch putt felt like about 20 feet, but it was only really four.”
“Luck was on my side this week.”
The NSW Mid Amateur is a first win for the English born golfer.
“This is my first. I won a few events as a junior back in the UK, but I have been here in Australia for 17 years now and this is the first Golf NSW tournament I have won.”