Golf: Pikari nets prestigious double


Compton Pikari struck double success at the Mount Maunganui Golf Club over the weekend, walking away with two titles.

The young Te Awamutu golfer teamed up with Mount player Bailey Smith to win the New Zealand Men's Foursomes Championships played over 36 holes on Friday, before taking out the highly prestigious Grant Clements Memorial Tournament over the weekend. It was the 13th time the 72 hole strokeplay event had been held at Mount Maunganui and was sponsored by Ssangyoung and Sheaff Motors.

Pikari shot a sizzling 66 in his third round to jump out to a four shot lead from Nelson's Ryan Chisnall heading into the final 18 holes, and he looked to be cruising to victory with a five shot lead with five holes to play. But two bogies against a birdie run by Chisnall cut his lead to two as the players walked to the 18th tee.

Chisnall's tee shot hit the trees and bounced back into the middle of the fairway and he put the heat on with a superb wedge to within six metres of the pin, but Pikari kept his nerve to also play a fine shot to the green. Chisnall needed to drop his putt to have any chance but he missed giving Pikari three puts to win - which he needed as he missed a downhill tiddler to add some late drama.

Pikari was especially pleased with how well he played in the third round when his 66 essentially won him the tournament.

"My whole game was good despite an average patch through the middle, but I finished well with four birdies in a row from 13 to 16, and I putted really well.

"I was pretty relaxed and played my own game, and didn't take much notice of what everyone else was doing.

"I like playing here, it is a good course and I won the Junior Kaimai Classic here, so I always like to come back to play at the Mount," said Pikari.

In the women's division, all players struggled with the well groomed course but eventually Aucklander Brittney Dryland won with a four round total of 305, with Tokoroa's Chantelle Cassidy two shots back and Grace Senior from Tauranga third.

The second New Zealand Men's Foursomes Championships held at Mount Maunganui attracted 45 pairs. Pre-event favourites were the Canterbury pair of Owen Burgess and Jason Bakermans, and the Otago pair of Brent McEwan and Michael Smith, with defending champions, Sam Davis (Tauranga) and James Hamilton (Omanu) not defending their title.

McEwan and Smith shot 69 to lead after round one from Josef Edge and Luke Toomey but the afternoon's round saw one of the locals take the lead. Mount Maunganui's Bailey Smith and Pikari shot an excellent 65 to go with their morning round of 73, to finish on 138 - four shots ahead of the Otago pair.

The introduction of the nett competition proved an excellent innovation and one the local golfers enjoyed. The Omanu pairing of Mark Kiwi and Hayden White took out the title, followed by Te Puke's John Campbell and Charlie Hellier in second spot, with Joshua Rookes (Mount Maunganui) and Jack Sullivan (Gold Coast) in third, and Mount Maunganui's Charles Robertson and Jason Madden fourth. The women's competition was won by the Maungakiekie pair of Brooke Hamilton and Jessie Hamilton.

Grant Clements Memorial Tournament

Men: Compton Pikari 70 69 66 72 277; Fraser MacLachlan 71 66 73 68 278; Koh Tae 74 70 68 69 281; Ryan Chisnall 70 69 70 72 281; Nick Voke 71 73 69 71 284; Luke Toomey 68 75 69 72 284.

Women: Brittney Dryland 75 70 79 81 305; Chantelle Cassidy 80 76 73 78 307; Grace Senior 78 81 79 75 313.

New Zealand Men's Foursomes

Bailey Smith Mt Maunganui, Compton Pikari Te Awamutu 138; Brent McEwan, Mike Smith, St Clair, Otago 142; Owen Burgess, Jason Bakermans, Russley, Christchurch 143; Brad Hayward New Plymouth, Jamie Reid Fitzroy 143.

Nett: Mark Kiwi, Hayden White, Omanu; John Campbell, Charlie Hillier, Te Puke; Joshua Rookes Mount Maunganui, Jack Sullivan, Gold Coast.

Women: Brooke Hamilton, Jessie Hamilton Maungakiekie.

- BAY OF PLENTY TIMES

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