North Harbour professional Michael Hendry has finished in a share of seventh place at the Australian Open after carding a one under par 71 in gusting winds in the final round at The Lakes Golf Club in Sydney.
The 33-year-old, who chartered a plane from Brisbane to Sydney at a cost of $19,000 to get to his first round tee time with only minutes remaining, carded rounds of 72, 71, 74 and 71 for a one under par total.
He finished four shots behind 53-year-old Australian Peter Senior who went to the top of the PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit with his second win of the Australian Open.
Hendry slips to second on the Order of Merit and will head to the final event of the season - the PGA Championship of Australia at Coolum - with everything to play for.
When the wind picked up to almost 80km/h at The Lakes Golf Club Hendry seemed to play his best. He played the back nine in two under par and kept ahead of one of his main rivals for the Order of Merit in Adam Scott who shot 76 to finish tied 14th.
Mark Brown, who missed the cut at the Australian Open, remains fourth on the Order of Merit.
Hendry, who won the NZ PGA at the start of 2012, has endured a hectic schedule of late which has included five straight weeks of tournament golf and also saw him earn a full card to the Japan Tour in 2013.
He was the best of the Kiwis with Wellington pro Gareth Paddison fading with a 79 in the final round to finish tied 39th and Bay of Plenty professional Josh Geary slipping back to tied 51st after an 82.
Otago professional Mahal Pearce signed for a 79 in the final round to finish the event in a share of 61st place.
The other Kiwis in the field, Hamish Robertson, Doug Holloway, Vaughan McCall (a), Ryan Fox, David Smail, Brad Shilton and amateur Tyler Hodge all missed the cut.
PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit - Top 10 players heading into final event at Coolum:
Place Player No. of Events Money Earned (AUD)
1 Peter Senior (QLD) 2 $259,000.00
2 Michael Hendry (NZL) 8 $243,500.08
3 Adam Scott (QLD) 2 $199,750.00
4 Mark Brown (NZL) 6 $141,287.45
5 Jason Norris (SA) 10 $103,420.70
6 Peter Wilson (VIC) 11 $93,800.30
7 Gareth Paddison (NZL) 8 $87,979.68
8 Cameron Percy (VIC) 1 $84,375.00
9 Steven Jones (VIC) 9 $61,258.32
10 Kieran Pratt (VIC) 2 $60,987.55