Golf: Zwart cruises to Muriwai victory

Pieter Zwart celebrates winning the Autex Muriwai Open, Muriwai Golf Club. Photo / Simon Watts
Pieter Zwart celebrates winning the Autex Muriwai Open, Muriwai Golf Club. Photo / Simon Watts

In an exciting final day of the golfing summer, we have witnessed the most dominant victory on the Charles Tour this season by Pieter Zwart, while Jim Cusdin became the inaugural winner of the Jennian Homes Trophy.

Zwart completed the wire to wire victory with a smile on his face as he walked the final hole of the season in comfort to win the Autex Muriwai Open by four shots. He showed no signs of easing up all week with rounds of 65, 66, 69 and 70.

The Hawkes Bay professional was determined from the start and his emotions were hard to hide after winning for the first time on the national circuit.

"It's a bit of a relief really, I have worked hard for this so to get the job done on the Jennian Homes Charles Tour is very satisfying," said Zwart.

The 29 year old has made his intentions clear all week so to win the final event of the summer meant huge amounts for him and his family.

"This is not just me, it's a team with everyone back at home helping me the whole way, it will be nice to celebrate with them back in the Bay."

"It was getting to that stage when you are looked at as a player who has the ability, but never quite pull through, but now to be considered as a person who has won a four round tournament in New Zealand it definitely ticks off a few goals."

To win on the national tour was a special feeling and Zwart is pleased with where golf in New Zealand is heading.

"There's an opportunity for everyone, the prize funds are going up and it shows there is more interest in the game of golf in New Zealand and it's obviously more beneficial to everyone."

To top the week off for Zwart he shared the lowest round of the tournament with Johnny Tynan and they will share a pallet of Asahi beer for their efforts.

It's been a tough week for Bay of Plenty professional Jim Cusdin but it has been a great season which is why he is taking home the Jennian Homes Trophy.

A trophy awarded for consistency and perseverance, Cusdin has been exactly that throughout the golfing summer playing in five of the six Jennian Homes events and with three top five finishes.

Cusdin was relying on Zwart to get the job done this afternoon with Ryan Chisnall, Brad Shilton and even Kieran Muir who wasn't here, all having a slim chance of taking home the trophy.

It was clear Jim Cusdin was only thinking about one prize all week after finishing another tough round this afternoon.

"Surely three over is enough," Cusdin grinned as he left the 18th green.

"It's a great feeling, even though I didn't play that well this week, I played good golf at the start of the year and had chances to win three tournaments, so it's a pretty good finish to the season."

"I now get the chance to play in the New Zealand Open which is a massive opportunity for me and makes me feel more comfortable with my game and this gives me a chance to set some goals for March next year."

Amelia Garvey has also joined Pieter Zwart and won for the first time on the Jennian Homes Charles Tour. The Kiapoi and New Zealand Academy amateur has been in contention many times throughout the year and in the final event, she got the job done.

Winning by two shots over fellow Cantabrian Momoka Kobori, she was over the moon and more than happy to get her first win.

"It hasn't really sunk in yet, but I'm sure it will when I get home and see my family," said Garvey.

"It's awesome, I have struggled to get the win for quite a while so it was nice to have a good day today. I'm pretty glad I didn't three putt from eight feet on the last," laughed the 15 year old.

Garvey is in the New Zealand academy so for her to finish this off under pressure is a big step in her development and is certainly one to watch in the future.

Jennian Homes also surprised everyone in the room at the prize giving by awarding the five top players on the Jennian Homes Trophy points table who have played in every event this year with a bonus $2000 for their support and perseverance.

This included Joonsang Chung, Brad Hayward, Doug Holloway, Troy Ropiha and Martin Pettigrew.

For now the season is over, but when we return to the Carrus Open in September the stakes will be higher, the competition will be tougher and players will be better.

- NZ Herald

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