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Smylie and Park Australian Junior Champions

Smylie all smiles after his impressive victory. (Photo: Bruce Young)
16-year Gold Coast golfer Elvis Smylie is the 2019 Australian Boys Amateur Champion following his impressive five-shot victory at the Southport Golf Club today.

Smylie began the final 36 holes one behind the New Zealand PGA Champion, Kazuma Kabori from Christchurch and Harrison Crowe from the St Michaels Golf Club in Sydney, but a morning round of 63 saw him begin the afternoon five shots ahead.

In occasionally heavy rain, Smylie was able to hold off any challenges with an impressive display of strategic golf to maintain his lead virtually throughout, his only real blemish coming when finding the trees at the 11th hole of the afternoon round and being forced to pitch out before missing a six-footer for par.

He would also bogey his final hole but by then it was all over having taken a six-shot lead to the 72nd hole.  

Kabori, who a month ago shocked the golfing world by winning the New Zealand PGA Championship against a field of PGA Tour of Australasia players, finished in outright second place with Brisbane golfer Duncan Tyler another shot back.

A member of both the Southport and Nudgee Golf Clubs, Smylie is the son of former top tennis, Liz Smylie, who along with her husband Peter was in attendance yesterday.

Liz Smylie won several Grand Slam doubles titles during her career including the Wimbledon Doubles title and Mixed Doubles titles at Wimbledon and the US Open.

Despite her remarkable success as an elite tennis player, Smylie was quick to say that the win by her son Elvis surpassed, in her own mind, any of her own achievements.

“Nothing I have achieved has ever come close to this,” said an emotional and proud mother.

Smylie will not only earn a start at this year’s Australian Open at the Australian Golf Club in December he also earns an invite to the IMG Academy Junior World Golf Championship along with the opportunity to train at the IMG Academy property in Florida for a week free of charge.

Hye Park - photo courtesy of Golf Australia

In the Australian Junior Girls Championship played at the Coolangatta Tweed Heads Golf Club Hye Jun Park, a member at RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast, won a weather-reduced event by a massive seven shots over fellow Gold Coaster Lion Higo and Aucklander Fiona Xu.

Friday’s third round was severely disrupted by heavy rain, the delays forcing tournament officials to reduce the event to just 54 holes.

15-year old Park earns a start at the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open in Adelaide early in 2020 and a start at the IMG Academy Junior World Academy event in California in July.

 

 

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