KARRINYUP, Australia (January 21, 2018) - Never before has there been an Australian Amateur Championship winner from Japan, but now we have two.
The time-honoured titles, presented by Swinging Skirts, were whisked to the Land of the Rising Sun by firstly Suzuka Yamaguchi with an awe-inspiring performance in a 6&5 win over the highly fancied Ayean Cho at Lake Karrinyup Country Club.
And less than an hour later, another impressive performance culminated in victory for Keita Nakajima in the men’s division, bowling over the nominal favourite David Micheluzzi 4&3.
Yamaguchi was, remarkably, 12 under par through the final’s 31 holes, rolling in two eagles and 10 birdies in a display belying her tender 17 years.
She vowed to return and “hopefully do well” at the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open next month in Adelaide – and playing as she did today, you could not put it past her.
“I’m very proud, very happy to win Australian Amateur … a tournament I really wanted to win,” said Yamaguchi, who played the 2015 US Women’s Open as a 14-year-old.
“I played last year and was beaten by a Korean (eventual finalist So-mi Lee in the match play phase) and didn’t want that to happen again this year.
“So I’m very excited to have played so well … it’s a big day for me. I can’t wait to come back to Adelaide and play. It’s my dream to play (on the) LPGA (Tour), so it will be great.”
Cho, for the second time in three years, was relegated to the runner-up position, but in defeat should hold her head high to have gone so far through the 36-hole finale against the Japanese wrecking ball.
ABOUT THE Australian Women's Amateur
The Australian Men's and Women's Amateur
Championships are Australia's
oldest Amateur Golf Championships, with both having
been played since 1894.
Long held as a match play event, in 2021 the format
changed to 72 holes of
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