The 2016 Men’s NSW Senior Amateur Championship was played over 54 holes at Narooma Golf Club (rounds one and three) and Bermagui Country Club (round two).
Round 3 - Narooma GC
NSW senior Stefan Albinski has won the 2016 Men’s NSW Senior Amateur Championship in a very exciting day at Narooma Golf Club.
Hitting off on the final morning Albinski had a comfortable five stroke lead over Peter Hannah and a seven stroke lead over Steve Toyne. As often happens golf threw in a few surprises.
Albinski had three bogies on the front nine while Hannah turned one under par. The lead was just one stroke. Toyne had slipped further back with his opening four over par nine holes. In other groups only Lester Peterson was playing well enough to be a possibility. He would eventually finish with a round of 73 and fourth place. This was his first senior event and there will be plenty of wins in the coming years.
It was on the back nine that the excitement really began. Toyne showed what a great player he is with birdies on 10, 11 and 12 to get back in the match. Hannah continued to play par golf and when Albinski bogied thirteen he shared the lead with Hannah. Toyne was still four behind but then birdied fifteen and sixteen. He had birdied five of the back nine's first seven holes.
On the fifteenth hole Hannah had driven a little wide to finish in an awkward lie on the very edge of the fairway bunker. He played a fine second to land in the greenside bunker not too far from the pin. However, the ball had buried deep in a grass bush "feature" placed in the middle of the bunker. He had no real shot and finished with a double bogey. He had lost two strokes that would eventually make the difference.
Toyne almost eagled sixteen and as the players left the par five Albinski led both Toyne and Hannah by two strokes. All found the green on the uphill par three seventeenth.
Surprisingly, Albinski three putted from not too far away while the others safely parred. Hannah's birdie putt looked in but just edged by. The lead was one with one hole to play.
Both Toyne and Hannah drove well and had clear shots towards the par five green. Albinski pushed his drive and stopped just a metre from the steep gully and certain disaster. He had a swing and found the fairway with a very well played second shot.
Both challengers played strong second shots to be close to the final green and real birdie chances. Albinski played a solid third shot that flirted with the bunker but then finished on the green . Toyne pitched to twelve feet and Hannah to five. It would probably come down to these putts!
Albinski putted safely and had the par he needed and watched as both Toyne and Hannah tried to force a play-off. They both missed narrowly and the championship belonged to Albinski. A relieved champion but a deserved one.
In a marvellous senior career Albinski has now won every Australian state and territory senior amateur title. As well he has collected three Australian Senior Amateur titles and three Australian Senior Amateur Matchplay titles. A record that will be very hard to equal.
The top four places were clear cut with a surprising gap to the rest of the field. The top four had recently represented Australia in the series against New Zealand and demonstrated that they will be part of future Australian teams for some years to come.
Once again a wonderful week of golf at Narooma and Bermagui Golf Clubs.
220 ALBINSKI Stefan 71 71 78
221 HANNAH Peter 73 74 74, TOYNE Steve 73 76 72
223 PETERSON Lester 75 75 73
229 BEASLEY Graham 76 79 74, WILDER Alan 73 80 76
232 CIRILLO Dominic 78 78 76, MUSGRAVE Michael 78 74 80
233 ROGERS Russell 80 77 76, BARTON Paul 76 78 79, MINOGUE Martin 75 82 76, WOOD Noel 75 80 78, CRANFIELD Geoff 75 77 81, WOOD Richard 74 81 78, HAY Mark 76 79 79
234 NEESON John 78 82 75,
235 CHRISTIE Samuel 77 82 76, HOWLAND Graeme 73 80 82
236 WATTON Greg 80 80 76, DALE, Denis 77 82 77
237 HUMMERSTON Ward 80 77 80, KELLY Bryan 78 77 82, ELLIS Greg 77 84 76, LIMBACH David 76 85 76, DOOLAN Brad 76 77 84, CARPENTER Wayne 75 81 81
Round 2 - Bermagui GC
At the end of the second round at Bermagui the tournament leader is Stefan Albinski following his rounds of one under par 71 at each course. Great golf!
Albinski has won every other state and territory senior championship in a wonderful career but he has never won the NSW Senior Championship. With a five stroke lead entering the final round this is his best chance.
Second place is held by Queenslander Peter Hannah after very good scores of 73-74. His 147 total is five behind Albinski and they will be playing together tomorrow in the final group. Joining them will be another Queenslander in Steve Toyne who holds third place after rounds of 73-75=148.
The only other golfers with perhaps a remote chance of catching Albinski are Lester Peterson (75-75=150) and Ken Brewer (74-76=150),
142 ALBINSKI, STEFAN 71 71
147 HANNAH, Peter 73 74
149 TOYNE, Steve 73 76
150 PETERSON, Lester 75 75, BREWER, KENNETH 74 76
152 MUSGRAVE, Michael 78 74, CRANFIELD, GEOFF 75 77
153 DOOLAN, Brad 76 77, HOWLAND, Graeme 73 80, WILDER, Alan 73 80
154 BARTON, PAUL 76 78
As is often the case with coastal courses the playing conditions were somewhat easier for the morning players. Quite clearly the Bermagui course was the winner today with many fine golfers having very high scores.
Included in the high scores were well known senior golfers such as Roy Vandersluis who followed his opening even par round of 72 with an 87. Tony Kennings followed his 73 with an 84 and Dave Limbach followed his 76 with an 85. A browse through the scores below will reveal many other round two "blow-outs".
There were only eight rounds better than 76 on this very demanding course, especially for the senior golfer. If you have the chance to play a round at Bermagui take it up and enjoy the challenge!
The final round will be played at Narooma Golf Club where the top half of the field will compete. The remainder of the field have the option of returning for another round at Bermagui in a separate 18 hole Stableford competition.
Round 1 - Narooma GC
After the field of 160 senior golfers had completed the opening round the leader was well known Australian senior Stefan Albinski. He was the only player to break par and his score of one under par 71 gives him a one stroke lead over over Roy Vandersluis from The Lakes club.
Albinski finished his round with three birdies over the final seven holes while Vandersluis (pictured) played consistently all day with his round including two bogies and two birdies.
Just one stroke behind on one over par 73 are the experienced Tony Kennings (Forster-Tuncurry), newcomer Alan Wilder (Young), Queenslander pair Steve Toyne and Peter Hannah plus Graeme Howland (Dunheved).
71 ALBINSKI Stefan
72 VANDERSLUIS Roy
73 HANNAH Peter, TOYNE Steve, WILDER Alan, KENNINGS Tony, HOWLAND Graeme
74 WOOD Richard, RICHARDSON Scott, BREWER Ken
75 MINOGUE Martin, CRANFIELD Geoff, BATMAN Gary, CARPENTER Wayne, GORTON Warren, PETERSON Lester, HAROLD Tom
Conditions were very good for the morning players but an afternoon strong breeze did make it tougher for the later players. 26 of the morning players returned a score under 80 with 21 afternoon players also finishing under 80.
Following the second round at Bermagui Golf Club a cut will be conducted with the leading 80 players (plus ties) going through to compete in the final day of seeded stroke play at Narooma.