By Todd Whelan
Bacchus Marsh Professional Golfer Josh Younger has recorded his first ‘tier one’ victory on the Australian PGA Tour, winning the $400,000 AV Jennings NSW Open in a thrilling play-off at the weekend..
Younger looked certain to win the title with the outright lead heading up the 72nd and final hole 18th at the Twin Creeks Golf and Country Club in Sydney’s West but smashed his tee shot into the hazard before a double bogey six turned dream, to near nightmare – and into a ‘sudden death’ play-off.
But the popular 35 year old was able to stabilize and compose himself on the second playoff hole (albeit the 18th again) against New South Welshman Travis Smyth. Younger hit the fairway with a conservative three wood off the tee to outplay Smyth who was wayward into the bunker.
But then the ‘money shot’ – as Younger near holes his second shot ‘in’ with ‘wedge’ before spinning away to leave a six foot putt for glory. The rest is now history – the inaugural ‘tier one’ victory achieved.
The emotional rollercoaster was not missed by Younger in the aftermath.
“Its a relief,” he said.
“I’ve been ten years (on tour), it’s so hard to win.
“Normally when you make six down the last it’s all over, you need things to go your way.”
Despite the nervous moments and near implosion on the final day, Younger was near flawless for the most part, especially on Day one as he opened the tournament with six birdies back-to-back, before carting an amazing 63 to secure an outright lead. Steadying rounds of 70 and 67 followed and kept the ‘caddyless’ Younger within touch heading into the final day.
With Christmas spoils now spoken for at the Younger household, it’s hopeful the win can instil the confidence and self belief of more success to come.
Celebratory drinks loom likely to follow Younger’s humble speech, accepting the Kel Nagle Trophy and deserved winners cheque before it’s back to business as usual ahead of Thursday’s opening round of the Australian Open in Kensington, New South Wales.