Blue Stars Shine in Stellar Weekend

It’s been a remarkable weekend of golf for many players from NSW, many making their mark on tournaments across the country and globe.

Jeff Guan secured a silver medal at the World Amateur Team Championship held at the Abu Dhabi Golf Club. The Aussie trio of Guan, Karl Vilips, and Jack Buchanan finished in a tie for second place with Norway, finishing a combined 25-under-par, a distant 11 shots behind runaway winners the United States.

This accomplishment marks Australia’s first Eisenhower Trophy medal since 2016 when the team comprising Cam Davis, Curtis Luck, and Harrison Endycott clinched the gold in Mexico. With this silver medal, Australia’s tally of medals at the World Amateur Team Championships now stands at 14, making them the second-highest medal-winning nation in the history of the event.

While Guan was in the running for the top individual honours and even climbed to the second position at one point, he faced setbacks in the form of two double-bogeys. Ultimately, his round of 72 left the Sydneysider sharing eighth place in the overall rankings.

Looking ahead, Guan is set to compete in the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship at Royal Melbourne, commencing this Thursday.

At Willunga Golf Course in South Australia, Sydney’s Austin Bautista, hailing from Bonnie Doon, emerged as the one-shot victor at the Webex Players Series.

The 26-year-old golfer’s stellar performance included a round of 64, featuring eight birdies, the day’s lowest score. This exceptional round followed his previous rounds of 65, 71, and 68.

Bautista’s triumph was made all the more impressive by his late surge, during which he recorded four birdies in the final six holes. Throughout his round, he had no knowledge of his standing on the leader board until he completed play.

“Golf is just wild. I’ve missed so many cuts I’ve thought about quitting,” he said.

“I’ve always been confident in my game, and I think I can win every week. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t.

“If I make putts and get on roll, it just feels like a video game.”

Joining Bautista, Corey Lamb from Branxton and Andrew Campbell from Coffs Harbour both secured a T2 finish, while Sam Brazel from Lismore landed at T6, and Josh Clarke from the Northern Beaches concluded the competition in a respectable T9 position.

Meanwhile, Andre Stolz took home a win at the Fidelity Capital Group Charity Legends Pro-Am in the Blue Mountains.

Stolz shot a 6-under-par 63 at the Springwood Country Club to win by a massive seven shots from Darryl Purchase, Perry Parker and David Fearns.

Stolz reeled off four straight birdies to end the front nine and after parring the short par-4 10th, added in another two birdies on the 11th and 12th holes. His two bogeys for the day came off “perfect tee shots” on the par-4 fifth and 16th. 

“I’m really happy to have some good form going with what’s coming up,” he said.

Next up for Stolz is the NSW Senior Open, which begins Friday at Thurgoona Golf Club.

And over in Spain, Mollymook’s Kelsey Bennett has another top ten finish, placing T6 at the Calatayud Ladies Open.

The 23-year-old had rounds of 70, 74 and 72 during the penultimate event of the 2023 LET Access Series Tour.

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