New bloods ahead at QLD Open
BY Bruce Young | Von Nida Tour | 2006 Queensland Open | Round Three | 28 Oct 2006
As blustery warm winds blew across the fairways of the Ipswich Golf Club today, the Roadcon Group Queensland Open field battled it out for third round honours and when, literally, the dust had settled, the second round leader and rookie professional, Tristan Lambert, had extended his one shot lead to three.
Tristan Lambert Interview
Lambert is playing his very first event as a professional and will be anxious to emulate the deeds of Andrew Buckle who in 2002 won this very event just five days after announcing his decision to turn professional.
Lambert is looking forward to quiet night tonight but thinks he will stay up late. “I actually slept well last night and I think the secret is to not go to bed too early.”
After a slow start today, Lambert’s round was kick started by a lengthy par save at the 6th hole followed by birdies at the closing three holes of the front nine which included a chip in from off the green at the 9th. "I couldn’t get anything going early but made that putt at six and that seemed to settle me down. I made a big birdie at the 9th after chipping in from behind the green which was a dangerous looking shot. That really did get the round going and overall I was pretty proud of the way I hung in out there with my scrambling and getting it up and down. My chipping and putting kept me in there."
Lambert made the turn at 15 under and three ahead of Ryan Haller and local amateur Nathan Uebergang and then moved to 16 under when he birdied the par five 16th after a huge drive set up just a short iron to the green. Surprisingly he missed the green from there but made a delightful up and down to move to 16 under and two ahead at that point of Uebergang.
Lambert dropped a shot at the 16th after missing the fairway a long way to the right. He managed to find the green with his second but a three putt saw him slip to 15 under but in the groups ahead, his closest rivals were also struggling.
Uebergang had moved within one of the lead at 14 under but a triple bogey at the par three 17th would prove costly. “I was between clubs and decided to attack it and then the wind got it and it missed the green long and left. I the tried to run it up the hill and it ran across the green and into the bunker and I took three more from there.”
Uebergang finished as the leading amateur last week at last week’s Minniecon and Burke Queensland Masters in Townsville and has benefited by exposure to some seasoned professionals in recent events. “I have learnt a lot from the likes of Lucas Parsons, Shane Tait and others I have played with in Cairns and Townsville not to force the issue as much as I have been doing in the past. I just have to let it happen rather than forcing it to happen.”
Uebergang is planning to try out at both the Australasian and Asian Tour Schools in coming weeks and feels the past few weeks have provided an invaluable learning process.
At 11 under, Uebergang is still not out of it but another Queensland amateur, Paul Donahoo from the Indooroopilly Golf Club, moved into outright second when he finished with a third round of 67 and at 12 under he is just three back of Lambert. Donahoo was the 2004 Queensland Stroke Play Champion and is a Ste Senior representative but this is another level altogether.
Others at 11 under par and in a share of third with Uebergang are Michael McGrath, Ryan Haller and Ricky Schmidt while at 10 under is another local, Adam Blyth.
Peter Senior could only tread water today and at six under is, it would seem, too far back to challenge.
For the many young and inexperienced players near the top of the leaderboard therefore, Sunday October 29th 2006 could well provide a milestone in their careers. The list of high class winners in the history of the event suggests that the winner tomorrow could well go onto great success in the game. It will be interesting to see how they handle the opportunity they have created for themselves over the first 54 holes.
As a footnote, the man after whom the Von Nida Tour was named, Norman Von Nida, was at the Ipswich Golf Club today with his wife Elva and Norman spent an hour or so in the sponsor’s tent sharing a story or two.