David Bransdon has survived a marathon final day to record his best finish of the year at the Japan PGA Championship at Ibusuki Golf Club.
Play in one of the Japan Golf Tour’s most prestigious events didn’t get underway until Friday due to rain with those who made the cut on Saturday forced to play the third and fourth rounds back-to-back on Sunday.
Ryo Ishikawa and Jung-Gon Hwang had to play 37 holes to determine the winner, Ishikawa recording his first win since 2016 at the first playoff hole.
Bransdon registered his first top-10 finish of the year four shots back of Ishikawa in a tie for seventh set up largely by a string of four consecutive birdies in his opening round.
Starting from the 10th tee, Bransdon made the turn in even par but dropped four straight birdies from the first hole and added a fifth at the eighth hole to play the opening round n 5-under and sit in a tie for fourth.
Nineteen putts on his back nine in the second round saw him drop to a tie for 13th but he turned that around on Sunday morning, needing just 13 putts on his inward nine for a 2-under 68 to move back inside the top 10, a position he maintained with a final round of 1-under 69.
Like Bransdon, Kiwi Michael Hendry and Sydney’s Won Joon Lee made a bright start with 4-under 67s in the opening round but were unable to maintain it, Hendry finishing tied for 32nd and Lee falling from a tie for 12th to tied for 38th with a final round of 5-over 75.
South Australian Adam Bland finished the week at 2-over par to be tied for 58th with Anthony Quayle and Brad Kennedy both missing the cut.
Sydney’s Kevin Yuan was the best performer of the 12-strong Australasian contingent on the China Tour, Yuan finishing tied for fifth at the Tianjin Binhai Forest Open.
Cory Crawford also finished in the top 10 while three-time winner this year Maverick Antcliff added to his position at the top of the Order of Merit with a tie for 17th.
Japan Golf Tour
|Japan PGA Championship|
|Ibusuki Golf Club|
|T38||Won Joon Lee||67-71-67-75—280||¥690,000|
|Tianjin Binhai Forest Open|
|Tianjin Tianjin Binhai Forest Golf Club|
Headlines at a glance
Doherty claims breakthrough win
Brad Doherty has fired a round of 5-under 66 to claim a one-shot victory in the Howeston Pro-Am and his third win on the Ladbrokes Pro-Am Series....
Brave Smith and Day fly Aussie flag
A pair of gritty opening day performances from Queenslanders Cam Smith and Jason Day have kept Australian hopes of winning The Open alive.
PGA TOUR China
Williamson earns first start in China
Sydney’s Dale Williamson has taken a significant step in progressing his game on the world stage after qualifying to play in his first PGA TOUR ...