Golf: Toro Men's Interprovincial Four semi finalists

Ryan Fox of Auckland tees off. Photo / Getty Images
Ryan Fox of Auckland tees off. Photo / Getty Images

Auckland was the final team to confirm their semifinal place joining Canterbury, Bay of Plenty and Southland when they overcame defending champions Wellington on a dramatic day at the Poverty Bay Golf Club in Gisborne today.

Division one was dubbed as the pool of death and so it proved as the two most successful teams in the men's interprovincial history, Wellington (13 wins) and Auckland (12), fought it out with a place in the final at stake.

Auckland No 1 Ryan Fox, who is trying to win his first interprovincial title before he turns professional, won the feature match of the day 1up against his good mate and Wellington rival Ben Campbell.

But the team contest was already won by that stage when Auckland No 2 Fraser Wilkin defeated Thomas Spearman-Burn 1up to put the point beyond reach as Auckland won 4-1.

Wilkin made a crucial birdie on the 17th that was deciding moment of the match.

New Zealand rep Sam An was another of Auckland's heroes on the final day of pool play as he made nine birdies in 13 holes to win 6 and 4 against Adam Church.

Auckland, who hasn't won the title since 1995, made a remarkable comeback to reach the semifinals after they suffered a shock defeat against Northland and then lost a close battle with Canterbury.

The match between Campbell and Fox matched the expected high quality with them shooting four under and five under respectively.

Ben and I had a good fun match today, we traded birdies early and then I made a good putt from about 15 feet on the sixth (15th for the tournament) that was really important," Fox said.

"It is nice to still be in this and I am hoping to go out [as an amateur] on a high."

In the other decisive match in division one Canterbury confirmed their place in the final four with a comfortable 5-0 win over Hawke's Bay.

On the other side of the draw Bay of Plenty progressed as the only undefeated team with six wins from six matches in division two.

The Bay, who have won three of the past four titles, booked their place in the semi-finals tomorrow with an emphatic 4 1/2 to 1/2 win over Aorangi South Canterbury.

There was plenty of drama in finding the other semifinalist from division two as the contest between Southland and Tasman was a winner-take-all match.

With four matches in the hut and the scores all tied at 2-2 it came down to the No 1s Vaughan McCall and Blair Riordan.

McCall fought hard for the vital half to help Southland progress.

The New Zealand rep made a clutch left to right birdie on the 17th from eight feet to be 1down heading down 18 and when Riordan found the greenside bunker on the last the match was Southland's.

"That was huge," said the 20-year-old McCall who plays out of the Gore Golf Club.

"I knew my team's fortunes were riding on the last two holes and there was a lot of pressure. It is why you play golf to be in those situations and all the boys were exceptional. I am just pleased we made it through.

"It was a great birdie on the 17th a putt that was left edge and yeah it was good to go straight in the centre of the cup.

Southland has never won the interprovincial title and McCall was excited about a rare opportunity to get the maroon and gold on the trophy.

"We just have to take it shot by shot tomorrow, I hope we can go all the way."

Southland plays Auckland tomorrow and Bay of Plenty is up against Canterbury with both semifinals teeing off at 7:30am and with the final to be played at 12:30pm.

Division One Leaderboard (Individual wins)

4 (22) Auckland
4 (21) Canterbury
4 (18) Wellington
3.5 (19.5) Manawatu / Wanganui
3 (11.5) Northland
3 (10.5) Taranaki
1.5 (10) Hawke's Bay
1 (7.5) Poverty Bay East Coast

Division Two Leaderboard:

6 (24) Bay of Plenty
4.5 (18) Southland
4 (17.5) Tasman
2.5 (15.5) North Harbour
2 (12) Waikato
1.5 (11.5) Otago
0.5 (6.5) Aorangi South Canterbury

New Zealand Men's Interprovincial results from today:

Round Six:
Bay of Plenty 5 Waikato 0

Brad Kendall bt Mat Perry 1up, Landyn Edwards bt Leonard Morgan 2up, James Hamilton bt Compton Pikari 1up, Sam Davis bt Daniel Graham 2/1, Craig Hamilton bt Jason Boobyer 4/3

Hawke's Bay 1/2 Auckland 4 1/2

Ben Swinburne lost to Ryan Fox 1up, Sam Penrice lost to Fraser Wilkin 1up, Kieran Goodall halved with Sam An, Paul Malcolm lost to Jonathan Ratcliffe 4/3, Justin Campbell lost to Tae Koh 3/2

Manawatu-Wanganui 1 Canterbury 4

Josh Munn lost to Keelan Kilpatrick 2/1, Tyler Hodge 5/4 Jordan Bakermans, Lachie McDonald bt Tom Turner 1up, Rhys Watkins lost to Mark O'Malley 3/2, Trent Munn lost to Harry Bateman 3/2

North Harbour 2 1/2 Tasman 2 1/2

Cameron Jones halved with Blair Riordan, Kevin Budden bt Hamish Campbell 1up, Anthony Cope lost to Ryan Chisnall 1up, Aaron Garnett lost to Tom Dasler 3/2, Stewart Gray bt Nick Ludbrook 2/1

Southland 3 Otago 2

Vaughan McCall lost to Brent McEwan 2/1, Cody Harper lost to Andrew Hobbs 4/3, Liam Balneaves bt Tyrone Ratahi 4/3, Scott Hellier bt Mitch Bosley 4/3, Matt Tautari bt Simon Hollyer 4/2

Wellington 5 Taranaki 0

Ben Campbell bt Brad Hayward 2/1, Thomas Spearman-Burn bt Tim White 3/1, Adam Church bt Thomas Hill 5/4, Marc Jennings bt Zach Lewis 6/5, Peter Brinsdon bt Murray Martin 1up

Round Seven:

Poverty Bay East Coast 3 1/2 Northland 1 1/2

Simon Jenkins lost to Brad Bonnington 3/2, William Brown bt Kadin Neho 3/2, Steven Donnelly bt Lee Neumann 5/4, Andrew Higham bt Alex Neely 4/3, Dion Milner halved with Sean Masters

Southland 2 1/2 Tasman 2 1/2

Vaughan McCall halved with Blair Riordan, Cody Harper lost to Hamish Campbell 3/2, Liam Balneaves lost to Ryan Chisnall 5/4, Scott Hellier bt Tom Dasler 5/4, Matt Tautari bt Nick Ludbrook 1up

Taranaki 0 Manawatu-Wanganui 5

Brad Hayward lost to Josh Munn 5/3, Tim White lost to Tyler Hodge 4/3, Thomas Hill lost to Lachie McDonald 2/1, Zach Lewis lost to Rhys Watkins 4/3, Murray Martin lost to Trent Munn 1up

Aorangi 1/2 Bay of Plenty 4 1/2

Tim Leonard lost to Brad Kendall 3/1, Scott Fox lost to Landyn Edwards 4/3, Owen Millar lost to James Hamilton 4/2, Damian Rodgers halved with Sam Davis, Robbie Bell lost to Craig Hamilton 6/5

North Harbour 3 Otago 2

Cameron Jones bt Brent McEwan 1up, Kevin Budden bt Andrew Hobbs 3/2, Anthony Cope lost to Tyrone Ratahi 1up, Aaron Garnett lost to Chris Snow 2up, Stewart Gray bt Mitch Bosley 2/1

Canterbury 5 Hawke's Bay 0

Keelan Kilpatrick bt Ben Swinburne 6/4, Jordan Bakermans bt Sam Penrice 5/4, Tom Turner bt Kieran Goodall 1up, Mark O'Malley bt Paul Malcolm 2up, Harry Bateman bt Justin Campbell 6/5

Wellington 1 Auckland 4

Ben Campbell lost to Ryan Fox 1up, Thomas Spearman-Burn lost to Fraser Wilkin 1up, Adam Church lost to Sam An 6/4, Marc Jennings bt Jonathan Ratcliffe 1up, Peter Brinsdon lost to Tae Koh 2/1

- APNZ

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