Austin Bautista has taken out the 2016 Golf NSW Amateur Championship over his Bonnie Doon team mate Troy Moses at Riverside Oaks Golf Resort today.
The 19 year-old was never headed in the final, and put on a commanding display of golf, winning 6 & 5 in the 36-hole final.
Bautista was elated with his win.
“Yeah, I mean NSW Amateur Champion. It sounds good. I live in Sydney so to win this, my State Amateur, is a pretty big deal to me.”
Bautista was dominant in the final, hitting a lot of quality shots and making a bunch of good birdie putts to put pressure on Moses from the very first hole of the match.
“I made some putts early on just like I planned, and I hit the shots I needed to.”
Moses threw plenty at Bautista early on but the young gun had the answers.
“Troy’s a really good player. When he hit a good shot I was right there and I was able to fire right back at him. There was a lot of high quality golf going on.
“I got up early and I kept making the birdies and kept making the plays.
“To be 5 up after 18 was exactly what I was looking for.”
The afternoon round was a bit more of a battle for Bautista, with Moses throwing caution to the wind and trying everything he had to reduce the deficit.
“I wasn’t sure what to expect in the second 18. I knew Troy would come back hard so I just tried to continue to hit good shots, and I did.”
The match was seemingly Bautista’s by the 25th hole in the afternoon round. His lead was by then out to a massive 8 holes. Moses however made a couple of birdies and managed to grab wins on a few holes, reducing the deficit to 6 holes by the 27th.
Bautista had his first chance to take the match on the 30th, hitting a sweet iron to about 6 feet. His putt for the title shaved the lip.
“It annoyed me a bit, I mean I hit a perfect drive. A perfect second shot to 6ft for the win. It was a left edge putt, I came across it and it missed.”
His disappointment didn’t last long. A driver and short iron to 30 feet followed by a two putt sealed the Championship.
“I mean it’s probably my biggest win for sure. NSW Amateur Champion is pretty cool. I played well at the Aussie Amateur but this was the next step for sure.”
Bautista’s name now sits alongside some greats in Australian golf, including a couple of Major winners in Eric Cremin and Michael Campbell. More recently winners like Ben Eccles and Jarryd Felton have gone on to make their mark in the professional ranks.
“To see my name on the trophy with them is pretty satisfying. Hopefully I’ll get an opportunity to play a bunch of pro events soon.”
The all Bonnie Doon final was a first for the club, and Bautista was thankful for the support with several club members turning up to watch the final.
“It’s a great result for Bonnie Doon. First and second. I’m stoked. It was good to see a few supporters come out and watch. It means a lot.” Bautista smiled.
Ga-young Lee of Korea defeated Yu Chiang Hou of Taiwan in the 2016 Golf NSW Women’s Amateur Championship.
Lee was never headed in the event, getting off to a flying start being 7up after 9 holes, taking just 29 strokes for the front nine along the way.
Hou staged somewhat of a comeback and by early in the afternoon round, had managed to pare the lead back to 1 hole.
Lee had too much in reserve however, and when Hou missed a makeable par putt on the par 3 15th ( 33rd hole) the match was over with 16-year old Lee taking the match 4 and 3.
Speaking through an interpreter Lee was very gracious about her win.
“It’s my biggest win and I’m glad I won.”
“I played well on the front nine, but the pressure got me a bit on the back nine.”
“Hou got better as the match went on, She played very well.”
Lee plans to make a career as a professional on the Japanese LPGA tour.
“ I want to be the best on the Tour,” she smiled.