DEFENDING CHAMPION RISES TO THE TOP OF MURIWAI OPEN

13/04/2018


Defending champion, Gareth Paddison has surged to the top of the Autex Muriwai Open to hold a one-shot lead over an exciting young chasing pack on the Jennian Homes Charles Tour.

With a round of five-under, 67 he has quickly shown why he is the former champion and with seven birdies this afternoon, the veteran is now the bookies favourite as he looks to hold off Daniel Hillier and Ryan Chisnall who are one behind, followed by the local Luke Brown.

This exciting trio of chasers will throw everything at him, but he is looking forward to the weekend and the challenge that comes with it.

“When you come to these events, I am one of the older players, so I was happy to see Peter Fowler turn up,” laughed Paddison. “But they are all great young talents behind me and it’s going to be a lot of fun with Daniel and Ryan nipping at my heals.”

Paddison has had mountains of success at this level and as the 2017 Jennian Homes Trophy holder, you have to be competitive and passionate to get there.

“I wanna win it, definitely. There’s so much pride when you’re an older tour pro to come to these events and beat the young guys. If I’m not able to beat them, unless they play exceptionally well then fair play, but it’s a huge amount of pride at steak and I’m incredibly competitive, so I’m chomping at the bit to defend my title.”

Chisnall made the early move today with a morning round of four-under to jump into a tie for the top with Hillier who was the overnight leader and is excited to be back in contention as he eyes his second Jennian Homes Charles Tour title.

“Obviously I have been in contention in a few of these events and this is my first one as a pro, so I’m really looking forward to the weekend as I aim to get another notch on my belt,” said Tasman’s newest professional.

With Luke Brown and James Anstiss also in pursuit, the squad of young guns chasing Paddison have all been involved in New Zealand Golf representative teams which shows the strength of Kiwi golfers to come.

Paddison’s five-under par effort today also means he holds the lowest round of the event alongside Jang Hyun Lee and not only is he looking to defend his crown, but also the prize for 52 dozen Asahi beer which he halved with Josh Geary last year.

“If that holds on for the lowest round, it would be bloody awesome! Although, last year I didn’t see a drop of it with my dad and sister drinking it all.”

FULL LEADERBOARD

Muchin Keh has continued her dominance in the women’s field to now hold a sizable six-shot lead after just two rounds at the Autex Muriwai Open.

The 25-year-old professional is showing her experience with consistent rounds of 71 and 71 in torrid conditions on the West Coast.

“It was just a tough out there today, especially late in the day, so I’m happy I was able to hold it together and play safe golf like yesterday,” said Keh.

After securing her China Tour card last year, you can see her game has grown from strength to strength as she attempts to win for the third time here at Muriwai, which would be for a very credible fifth time on the Jennian Homes Charles Tour.

The next best can barely see her dust with Brittney Dryland sitting at four-over par and Miree Jung at five-over. The great thing about links golf means that things can change very quickly as we look forward to moving day tomorrow.

FULL LEADERBOARD

With power literally just returning to Muriwai (6:00pm this evening) things are starting to return to normality, but the frustrating part is that normality at the moment seems to be horrific weather too.

With large winds over the first two days, we are now expecting a huge amount of rain to fall overnight and throughout the day which means the tee times have been brought forward to 7:30am to allow for delays.

 

SHARE:

  • OOM LEADERBOARD

    RANK PLAYER SCORE
    1 Hillier, Daniel 134.67
    2 Mountcastle, Kerry 111.87
    3 McLean, Matthew 108.29
    4 Lee, Jang Hyun 90.89
    5 Koong, Kevin 86.92
    RANK PLAYER SCORE
    1 Dryland, Brittney 194.37
    2 Jung, Miree 137.32
    3 Hung, Juliana 136.13
    4 Lu, Vivian 127.43
    5 Lim, Carmen 106.61