Bowditch and Kresge lead Jacob's Creek Open
BY iseekgolf.com | Web.com Tour | 2005 Jacob's Creek Open | Round One | 17 Feb 2005
Queenslander Steven Bowditch and American Cliff Kresge lead the field after both shooting rounds of 5 under, 67, after the first round of the Jacob’s Creek Open at Royal Adelaide today.
21 year Bowditch from Perigian Beach in Queensland was the only one of the late starters to catch Kresge who set the pace early, and finds himself in a similar position to last week after he led the field at the end of round one of the 2005 New Zealand Open.
Bowditch will be hoping for a better result than the one in New Zealand where he eventually finished T41, but after today’s opening round he was happy with the start.
“I went out there in a good frame of mind and shot 7 birdies and 2 bogeys so all in all it was a good day. I didn’t feel too much pressure being the first round and I think if I just keep doing what I’m doing it will all come together,” said the laid back Queenslander, who sites tongue in cheek, in his 2005 player profile, the reason for taking to the golf course aged 10 being because “the golf course was the only place I could smoke.”
Despite finishing T41 in New Zealand and T69 the week before at the Heineken Classic, Bowditch is confident that the form he finished with at the end of 2004 where he won the Queensland Open, finished 3rd at the Hillross Australian Open and 4th at the MasterCard Masters isn’t far away.
“There are a few things that I still need to work on physically and mentally and a couple of things in my life away from the course that I have needed to sort out because they were effecting my golf, but things are coming together and I feel positive. I’m only 21 years old and whilst I’ve been a pro for three years now I still have plenty to learn and plenty of time to do that.”
Kresge, from Lakewood New Jersey, had an eventful round earlier in the day carding birdies on the 10th and 11th holes, a bogey on the 14th followed by an Eagle three on the 15th and a bogey on the 17th. His front nine yielded four birdies and a bogey.
Kresge, who lost his card to the PGA Tour last year, says he was happy with his short game today. He was pleased to have started confidently after missing the cut the last time he played in the Jacob’s Creek Open at Kooyonga in 2002.
“I thought my ball striking was like I wanted it to be but my putting was great,” he said. “I started off perfect – made a 25-30 foot putt on the first (ninth) hole.”
Bowditch and Kresge hold a one shot lead over 1998 Australian Open winner Greg Chalmers, who won the event at Royal Adelaide. Chalmers, who has secured a US PGA TOUR card for 2005, played solidly through the tough back nine before scoring birdies on the second, third and ninth holes to finish his round with momentum.
“There are a lot of positive things about Royal Adelaide in my life so I drove in the gate and felt like I’m ready to play, said Perth born Chalmers. " Obviously winning the Open here in 1998. I get a lot of good shots that bring me good vibes."
Chalmers is joined on four under by fellow aussie, Queenslander Craig Jones, winner of the 1994 New Zealand Open. 35-year-old Jones, who finished this event T8 last year, shot a round of 6 birdies and 2 bogeys to finish alongside Chalmers with aussies Peter Fowler, Scott Laycock and Brad McIntosh members of a group of 9 players one shot behind on 3 under.
Last years winner Euan Walters had a shaky start to the tournament with a round of five over 77, including 2 bogeys and 2 double bogeys on his final 9 holes.
Play resumes tomorrow, Friday February 18 when the first groups tee off at 7:10am at Royal Adelaide.
Source – PGA Tour
Photo – Anthony Powter