Defending champion Mark Boulton has survived a drama-packed final day to take out his second NSW Mid-Amateur Championship at Bathurst Golf Club.
On a cold, late autumn afternoon that saw four players with realistic chances to win in the closing stages, Boulton held his nerve to post a five-over par 76 to take the championship by a shot from challengers Mark Hale, Andrew Tharle and James Ponder.
Hale, who was in the box seat for much of the back nine, made a disastrous double bogey on the last, while his playing partner Tharle let a knee trembling four footer for birdie slip by. Boulton, in the next to last group of the day, didn’t fare much better, making a bogey six on the last, but it was enough for the win for the golfer from Phillip Island in Victoria.
RELATED LINKS (click to view)
PHOTO GALLERY: FINAL ROUND ACTION
Boulton, who is also the reigning Australian, Victorian and South Australian Mid-Amateur Champion, was relieved with his victory after the round.
“It was hard work,” Boulton smiled.
“I started bogey, bogey, I thought I was in for a big score today.
“But I held it steady on the back nine, so I guess I stumbled over the line.”
Boulton described the feeling of taking out the title back-to-back as ‘awesome’.
“It’s a huge achievement.
“It was a strong field, great course, absolutely mint condition, I’m really excited.
“I’ll have to come back and defend, I’ll do the honourable thing, for sure.”
Bouton will also now take his place in the 2018 NSW Open at Twin Creek Golf and Country Club in November. He described the achievement as a ‘career dream.”
“It’s a career dream to get a foot in the door at a tournament like that.
“To get out there with the big guys, I’ll have to get plenty of practice in,” he smiled.
227: Mark Boulton.
228: Mark Hale, Andrew Tharle, James Ponder.
230: Daniel Nesbitt, Andy Cambell, Nicholas Crews Justin Hurst, Jamie PItt.
231: Kieth Shepherd.