Travis Smyth has added the Riversdale Cup to his growing collection of golf titles. Picture: GEORGIA MATTSIllawarra golfer Travis Smyth has taken out the prestigious Riversdale Cup, Australia’s premier amateur tournament, in a play-off at the suburban Melbourne course.
The 20-year-old said the victory was “the best of my career.”
After 16 holes in the final round Smyth, from the Kiama Golf Club on the South Coast, was at seven-under and trailed Commonwealth’s Lucas Herbert, two holes ahead, by two strokes.
Herbert, also 20, gave Smyth opportunity with a disastrous last hole when he miscued a bunker shot, settling for a bogey and a 72-hole total of 280.
For Smyth, the 18th became a make-or-break moment. A birdie would draw him level with Herbert. He was equal to the task, bombing his drive through the par-four green to just off the back edge. His chip was pitch perfect.
In the play-off, Smyth, who also plays in Sydney with the St Michael’s club, drove to a greenside bunker while Herbert landed short of another bunker in the rough. Once again Herbert had to settle for a five, while Smyth’s bunker shot put him in position for yet another birdie.
Smyth said that he had remained “reasonably confident” on the back nine.
“I’d played it well on all four days,” Smyth said.
“I wasn’t thinking ahead, just trying to stay calm and concentrating on one shot at a time.”
The women’s Riversdale Cup, played in conjunction with the men’s, was won by New Zealand’s best amateur golfer, Munchin Keh.
Keh, who has taken the mantle of New Zealand’s best amateur from Lydia Ko, now a professional, finished the tournament at four-over 296.
Keh was a six-shot winner over her younger sister, Wenyung, Mt Lawley’s Hannah Green and the reigning US junior girls’ champion, Princess Mary Superal, from the Philippines.
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