James Hydes is having a year to remember as he has added yet another trophy to his growing trophy cabinet with the New Zealand Amateur Championship. 

Hydes has defeated 2018 New Zealand Amateur champion Charlie Smail in the 36-hole final at Poverty Bay Golf Club 3&2 to etch his name in the history books and become the 118th champion of the most prestigious amateur tournament in New Zealand.

It’s his second big title of 2020 having won the Autex Muriwai Open back in August.

Hydes golf has reached a new level this year, and he says he’s enjoying every minute of it.

“Man, I’m not sure what’s clicked. Every part of my game has improved, and I know it sounds stupid, but I’ve been loving my golf and I’ve loved travelling around with my mates playing against them week after week.

“I’m just loving what I’m doing right now,” Hydes says.

He got off to a quick start this morning making a birdie at the first to go 1up and establish a lead he’d never relinquish.

He won the eighth with another birdie to move to 2up, and the pair halved the next 10 holes meaning Hydes went into lunch with a two-hole buffer.

He quickly got back into his work in the second half and extended his lead to three on the 22nd with a birdie. He then moved to 4up with nine-holes to play with a par on the 27th.

The lead was unsurmountable and Hydes was 3up with three holes to play. He found the green at the 34th and only needed two-putts to secure his first national title.

He’s ecstatic to get the job done.

“It feels so good!

“Coming down the stretch was probably one of the hardest but most fun things I’ve ever done. Big ups to Charlie, he didn’t let me have it the whole way and fought right till the very end.

“It’s so special to get my hands on this piece of silverware. I know all the history behind it, I was standing on the first tee this morning having a look at all of the names on it and trying not to get psyched out by it by all of the good names that are on it.

“It’s just so special,” Hydes says.

He says this year has proved he’s on the track to achieve his dreams.

“I know I can do it now and I want to carry on this path and make a career out of this game.”

He’ll now shift his attention to the New Zealand Men’s Interprovincials at the end of November.

All players were complimentary of Poverty Bay Golf Club who were terrific hosts of the 118th New Zealand Amateur Championship.



    1 Hydes, James 156.07
    2 Kobori, Kazuma 123.61
    3 Thompson, Mako 110.28
    4 Jones, Samuel 93.31
    5 Zheng, Jimmy 86.98
    1 Chung, Darae 218.92
    2 Kobori, Momoka 159.50
    3 Xu, Fiona 128.24
    4 Son, Yeonsoo 96.58
    5 Lu, Vivian 91.25