Nick Voke has proven once again he can perform when the spotlight is on, finishing as the top qualifier at the Brian Green Property Group NZ Super 6’s at Manawatu Golf Club.

Voke started the final day with a four shot lead and looked to be in cruise control for much of the final round. A double bogey on the 10th brought him back to the rest of the field, resulting in a tense showdown with good mates Luke Toomey and Michael Hendry late in the day.

The rising star stepped up on the 18th hole in a share of the lead with Toomey and hit his drive only a couple of metres off the front edge of the green. He’d proceed to chip up to a couple of feet and tap in for birdie which would prove good enough as Toomey could only manage a par.

Voke says it was a tough day at the office but is stoked to come out on top.

“This feel fantastic. At the start of the week the goal was to get into the top eight, but at the start of the day today the new goal was to get to 15-under par.

“I’ve learned that I need to be chasing a target and I thought 15-under was a pretty good target at the time. I made a sloppy double on the 10th and I had to quickly revaluate but I’m happy with two-under in the end,” says Voke.

The final round of 69 was good enough to get one up on his mate Toomey who applied a lot of pressure late in the day.

“We weren’t mates at the time,” laughs Voke.

“He’s a good sort and he played really well today. His putter certainly got hot toward the end and he holed a couple of 15 footers on the 16th and 17th to apply the pressure which I was feeling. I guess that’s what’s going to get us to the next level; putting ourselves in these positions and learning from them.”

They’ll have the opportunity to feel more pressure in the intense six-hole medal matchplay component of the event beginning tomorrow, something that Toomey is looking forward to.

“Tomorrow will be a strange day for us. The format doesn’t change a whole lot in terms of how I’ll play the course tomorrow. I’ll have to be a little bit cautious of someone who comes flying out of the blocks, but the golf course is one you take on anyway.

“In that regard, you hit it as far as you can and then as close as you can. It’s pretty simple,” says Toomey.

The battle up the top of the leaderboard wasn’t the only thrilling golf that was happening this afternoon. A six-person playoff was needed to decide the 24th spot for tomorrow’s matchplay section of the tournament, which took place up the 18th hole right next to where the local patrons got to spectate.

However, it was local golfer Lachie McDonald who prevailed after the first playoff hole with a birdie, after making bogey in regular play.

He’s over the moon that he gets to tee it up again tomorrow.

“It’s pretty crazy that it came down to a playoff hole like that.

“I was 48th heading into today so I had a fair bit of work to do, but I’m pretty happy I was able to hang around to 4.30 this afternoon to grab myself a spot,” he says.

The top eight qualifiers from the strokeplay will have a bye tomorrow during the first round, with the next 16 all playing knockout medal matchplay to see who progresses through to play the top seeds.

Play gets underway tomorrow morning from 7.30.



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