Number one seeds Curtis Luck of Cottesloe and Hannah Green of Mount Lawley have qualified for the WA Amateur Finals to be held tomorrow at Royal Perth Golf Club.
The WA Amateur Medalists face blockbuster matchups in their finals, with Luck facing Australia’s Number 4 Cameron Davis of NSW and Green facing Australia’s Number 5 Hayley Bettencourt of Mandurah.
The Men’s Semi finals went down to the wire, with both matches featuring many seesawing lead changes. Luck and Davis qualified with 2&1 margins over Michael Montgomery of Mount Lawley and Shae Wools-Cobb of Queensland respectively.
While Luck faces a formidable opponent in Davis, who was the 2013 China Amateur Open Champion, Luck goes into the final with confidence playing a course in which he is very familiar.
Luck became a member of Royal Perth late last year with the aim of familiarising himself with the course layout, and it’s played dividends, breaking Brett Rumford and Daniel Nisbett’s course record of 65 with a 63 in Thursday’s final strokeplay round.
It’s already been a successful year for Luck, who will be looking to add the WA Amateur to a growing list of achievements that include winning the NSW Amateur Strokeplay Medal and the Victorian Junior Masters as well as finishing as a finalist at the Australian Amateur.
Hayley Bettencourt has the most comfortable match of the day, winning 5&3 against Royal Fremantle’s Saasha Callaghan. Hannah Green lead from the front in her match, racing out to a 3up lead through five holes, however Royal Perth’s Nadine Smith was able to peg Green’s lead back to 1 by the 15th hole. Wins on the 16th and 17th for Green secured the spot in the final with a 3&1 victory.
Both Hannah Green and Hayey Bettencourt are chasing their first wins of 2014 in tomorrow’s final. Green has two second place finishes to her name in 2014 at the Lake Maquarie Amateur and the Elvie Whitesides in Tasmania while Hayley Bettencourt placed second at the NSW Amateur Strokeplay.
CURTIS LUCK INTERVIEW
First WA Amateur final, how are you feeling ahead of tomorrow?
Pretty happy! I came close two years years ago against Brady Watt so it’s good to get it back and get into a position to win again. Feels great.
What happened two years ago?
I had to come up against Brady and I think I was only 14 or 15, and Brady just played really well and I think I lost on the 16th in the Semis.
Seemed like a very close game for you today. How was it out there?
Yeah it was one of those games where I made a birdie and he would follow up on the next hole with a birdie, so it’s always pretty intense going down the 17th when you’re 1-up because anything could happen. We were square with 4 to play so I’m happy I got that one up on 15 as it makes a huge difference if you’re up as it gives you a little bit of room to take it easy.
How is your game shaping up to tomorrow?
I’m really happy with my short game but I’ve got to go and do some work on my long game I think at Cottesloe this afternoon, but obviously I know the course well so I’m pretty confident with what my game plan is. I don’t have to think too much on my way around the course, I know all the greens and know where to hit it. Pretty happy and comfortable going into tomorrow’s final.
CAMERON DAVIS INTERVIEW
First State Amateur final for you, how you feeling?
Pretty good. I’ve played really well in the matchplay, although it was a bit of a struggle to get into it. I wasn’t playing that great in the strokeplay but I was happy to make the top 16, and now to make the final.
You a bit more familiar with the course now you’ve been around a few more times?
Having a good caddy (Victoria’s Jordan Zunic) always helps, but I’m getting to know the course a lot better, especially the greens, I’m not struggling with them anymore so it makes it a lot easier.
How has Jordan helped you this week?
Jordan writes everything down and gives you all the distances and give you a bit of a positive edge on every shot. He makes you certain with what shot you’re going to hit and you don’t go in doubting yourself.
HANNAH GREEN INTERVIEW
First WA Amateur final. Congratulations!
It feels good. I played well today and putted really well. It’s everything I’ve been wanting to do and it’s come through.
Was there anything you drew on from last year’s Semi Final loss?
Yeah I kind of let it slip last year and gave a away a few shots out there but today I kept my cool and made some birdies when I needed to.
Facing a good friend in Hayley, how do you feel about the matchup?
Of course it’s going to be hard as Hayley and I are good friends, but you just have to kind of forget about that and focus on the golf.
HAYLEY BETTENCOURT INTERVIEW
Fairly comfortable win today, how did you feel out there?
I played solid par golf today, just had one bad hole and could have holes few more putts for birdie but other than that it was solid and I’m happy that I’ve been consistent.
How does your game feel on Royal Perth, it really seems to suit you.
Yeah it’s not too long of a course so for my my irons, which is a strong part of my game, helps me out here. And with my short game as well, I just like this layout as my short game works well here.
Kristie SMith (current LPGA Professional Golfer) on the bag today and tomorrow, has she given you any advice on her win at the WA Amateur?
No not really. I’m really just trying to stay happy on the golf course, so we don’t really talk much about tactics, it’s just about being happy and just enjoying your round!