Asia-Pacific Amateur: Sampson Zheng breaks Amateur Course Record
Sampson Zheng (Asia-Pacific Amateur Photo)
Sampson Zheng (Asia-Pacific Amateur Photo)

Sampson Zheng, a 22-year-old from China, started the day six shots back in a tie for 13th and mastered the gusting winds on the famous Sandbelt venue to rack up four front-nine birdies with just one bogey. He moved up a gear again with a spectacular eagle three at the par-5 No. 10 which took him clear of the field.

Zheng, who was part of the winning Asia-Pacific team in the Bonallack Trophy in August, kept up the positive momentum with consecutive birdies on Holes No. 12 and 13 before giving a shot back at the next.

Playing in his third edition of the Championship, Zheng parred his way in from there to break the amateur Composite Course record of 66 held by Sir Michael Bonallack, whom the trophy is named after, for 55 years and matched earlier this week by New Zealand’s Kazuma Kobori.

Zheng takes a four-shot lead over the leading home hope Billy Dowling into tomorrow’s final round.

Dowling battled to stay in contention throughout the day. After trading two birdies with four bogeys on the front nine and dropping another at the 12th, he bounced back with birdies at the 14th and 16th but bogeyed the 17th to finish the day one over for the Championship.

The 18-year-old from Queensland has four wins since August and is making his debut appearance in the Championship.

Wenyi Ding worked hard to stay in striking distance of his compatriot Zheng. The 2022 U.S. Junior Amateur champion struggled early in his round, including a double bogey six at the fifth hole. A birdie three at the ninth steadied the ship but he dropped shots at the 11th, 14th and 17th to post a five over round of 76 and finish two over.

Even with Ding is first-round leader Kobori, who carded a three over round of 74. They are one shot ahead of Australia’s Max Charles, who sits three over alongside his fellow Australian Jasper Stubbs in a tie for fifth.

With windy conditions, the only other under par round of the day came from China’s Yanhan Zhou, who produced a two-under-par 69 to sit eight over and tied for 16th.

The Asia-Pacific Amateur field comprises 120 of the top male amateurs from the Asia-Pacific region. The 2023 field features players from 37 nations, all competing to secure an exemption into The Open and an invitation to the Masters Tournament in 2024.

The Championship was created in 2009 by the Masters Tournament, The R&A and the Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation in an effort to further develop amateur golf throughout the region.

Results: Asia-Pacific Amateur
1AustraliaJasper StubbsAustralia150068-74-74-69=285
T2ChinaWenyi DingChina100069-70-76-70=285
T2ChinaSampson ZhengChina100074-71-65-75=285
T4Chinese TaipeiChuan-Tai (Teddy) LinChinese Taipei70072-67-78-69=286
T4AustraliaMax CharlesAustralia70073-72-71-70=286

View full results for Asia-Pacific Amateur

ABOUT THE Asia-Pacific Amateur

The Asia-Pacific Amateur (formerly known as the Asian Amateur) is the first of a series of worldwide championships put together by a between the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC), the Masters Tournament and The R&A. The event offers the winner an invitation to the Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club and the British Open Championship. The event has historically moved throughout the region and has now been held in China, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, Australia and Hong Kong, Korea, and New Zealand.

A field, topping out at 120 players, is selected by the following criteria.

The top two ranked amateur players from each of the APGC member countries plus the four top ranked players from the host country. If there is not a sufficient number of players ranked from that member country, the member country may nominate a player(s) from their country, to be approved by the APGC, to fulfill the two positions eligible from that country.

The remainder of the field will be filled taking the next highest ranked players of APGC member countries, not otherwise qualified. The maximum number of eligible players from any APGC member country (with the exception of the host country) is six. Additional players may be offered at the event's discretion.

View Complete Tournament Information

Latest in 

Amateurgolf.com, Inc.
6965 El Camino Real 105-631
Carlsbad, CA 92009

Instagram X Facebook YouTube