Semi-finalists decided at NSW Amateur
BY Anthony Powter | Australian Mens Amateur Tour | 2009 New South Wales Amateur Championship | Quarter-Finals | 07 Feb 2009
From a starting field of 217 hopefuls the NSW Amateur Championship is down to the last four with the quarter-finals unfolding at The Australian Golf Club in Sydney’s east.
Michael Smyth will use his knowledge around his home layout as he takes on Scott Arnold in the top-half of the draw. Smyth accounted for Queensland’s, Tim Hart, on the 38th in yesterday’s quarter-final and earlier disposed of Jason Scrivener 2&1 in the second round.
Smyth has been a recent solid performer in top amateur tournaments with numerous top-10 finishes in the last three national trial events, including a tied 4th at The Dunes Medal. He should test Arnold to the fullest in today’s match.
Arnold, ranked 14th in the world defeated Rhein Gibson 7&6 in his quarter-final, after accounting for Adam Downton 4&3 in the second round.
Arnold finished outright fifth in the strokeplay format and is coming off a win a fortnight ago at the Lake Macquarie Amateur. He is the highest world ranked amateur remaining in the championship and if he’s able to overcome Smyth today, he’ll certainly be the player to beat.
In the bottom half of the draw, Brett Drewitt will encounter Scotland’s Ross Kellett in their semi-final. Drewitt defeated Charles Ford 2up in their quarter-final, whilst Kellett was too strong for Kyle Grant, winning their match 6&4.
Kellett, 21, is a plus two handicapper and has featured strongly on the junior European circuit over the last few years, successfully graduating to the men’s senior ranks.
A member of the Scotland Boys Team that finished 2nd in the 2006 European Team Championship, Kellett also hit the headlines the same summer by finishing 3rd in the Scottish Stroke Play Championship at Craigielaw and reached the quarter-finals of The Amateur Championship last June.
Drewitt, 18, recent moved to Sydney from Inverell and is a relatively new comer to the major amateur circuit with his recent accomplishment, a seventh in the Jack Newton International Junior Classic world final in China.
The Drewitt/Kellett encounter will be an interesting affair to follow, as neither have played each other in match play previously and both are eager to establish themselves within major amateur golf.
With the winner facing the daunting prospect of a final match up with either Arnold or Smyth, both season and accomplished players, the challenge is certainly there for the taking.