Golf: Lee and Wilkinson advance

By Kris Shannon

New Zealand's Danny Lee. Photo / File
New Zealand's Danny Lee. Photo / File

Two New Zealand golfers will have a shot at playing on next year's PGA Tour after Danny Lee and Tim Wilkinson advanced to the final stage of qualifying.

The 22-year-old Lee, who played on America's top tour this year but lost his card after coming 159th in the Fed Ex Cup, finished in a share of fourth place at the second stage of a Q-School tournament in California.

Wilkinson will join Lee at the final event later this month after finishing 11th at his qualifying tournament in Florida.

The pair came comfortably inside the top 19 cut-off to reach the final stage, but the news was not as good for fellows Kiwi Steve Alker and Josh Geary who both missed the mark.

Lee, the New Zealand No 1, shot rounds 65, 73, 69 and 71 at the Bear Creek Golf Club, making three birdies and two bogeys in a final round that saw him finish on a 10 under par total.

Wilkinson, who has previously played on the PGA Tour, had rounds of 67, 70, 71 and 69 for a seven under par total to finish safely inside the qualifying mark.

After finishing 59th on the second-tier Tour, Wilkinson earned his shot at making the step up after managing four birdies and two bogeys for a final-round two under 69.

Lee and Wilkinson will now join more than 150 golfers playing for 25 tour cards at the final stage of qualifying, a six-round tournament beginning on November 28 in California.

Alker and Geary both failed in their attempts to join their compatriots after finishing outside the top 19 at their respective second stage tournaments in California and Texas.

Hamilton professional Alker shot an even par 72 in the final round to miss the qualifying mark by just one shot, ruing a costly stretch on the front nine where he made three bogeys in succession.

Tauranga professional Josh Geary fell short of his PGA Tour dream, carding a one over par 73 to finish tied 59th and 12 shots off the qualifying mark.


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