Aussies on Tour: Heartbreak at Senior PGA - PGA of Australia

Aussies on Tour: Heartbreak at Senior PGA

A Richard Bland buzzsaw and frustrating weather delay has conspired to deny Australians Richard Green and Greg Chalmers victory at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship in Michigan.

The 54-hole co-leader alongside Ernie Els at Harbor Shores, Chalmers went toe-to-toe with Bland until the Englishman’s eagle on 15 and a suspension of play shortly afterward robbed the West Australian of any positive momentum.

Play was suspended for a total of 74 minutes and, when it resumed, Chalmers made his first bogey of the day on 16, going straight underneath his ball with his chip shot after missing the green with his approach.

He fell out of contention with two more bogeys at 17 and 18 as Bland shot 8-under 63 for a 17-under total to win by three from Green (65) with Chalmers (68) falling to third.

Playing in his first senior tournament, Bland began the day one back of the lead yet two holes in had moved past both Els and Chalmers to assume the front-running position.

When he made bogey on three and Chalmers recorded his first birdie of the day, the lead once again changed hands, a trend that would continue throughout the day.

Four birdies in the space of six holes saw American Chris DiMarco join Chalmers and Bland at 12-under before falling one back when Chalmers and Bland both made birdies at the par-4 eighth.

Bland took full advantage of back-to-back par-5s at nine and 10 to lead by two, Chalmers responding with consecutive birdies of his own at 11 and 12 to stay within one.

Bland’s bogey at the par-3 13th and Chalmers’ birdie from 18 feet on 14 saw the West Australian once again take the outright lead only for Bland to come in over the top with an eagle from six feet at the par-5 15th.

Play was suspended 10 minutes later due to dangerous weather in the area and when it resumed the two-time Australian Open dropped shots at both 16 and 17, handing Bland a three-shot buffer heading to the 72nd hole.

“Even though I didn’t finish as strongly as I would like, I have to take solace in the fact that I was 3-over at the start of the tournament on Thursday and here I am, finished third outright,” said Chalmers, who earned $US238,000 for his week’s work.

“It’s a great week in any first major, first real taste of being in the last group and seeing some things about what it takes and what I need to work on and improve.

“I take a lot of positives about it. I’m hopeful I can get another opportunity down the line.

“Ironically, I’m in the US Open and the British Open coming up, so hoping I’ll get some chances to get in this position again.”

Green’s surge came late on Sunday with eagles at both 12 and 15, taking his tally for the week to five.

He holed an 8-iron from 139 yards at the par-4 12th and then converted his chance from eight feet at the par-5 15th to reach 14-under.

A three-time winner on the Legends Tour in Europe, Green believes he is closing in on a maiden win in the US.

“Just think it adds to your confidence and belief that you can hang in there under pressure, you can take it all the way to the end,” said Green, who earned $US378,000 for second.

“That’s all you can really take out of it. I work so hard on my game in the background and it’s up to me to be mentally strong in those situations.”

In a week that began with 14 Aussies in the field, five finished inside the top 20.

Queenslander Scott Hend (66) also made eagle on 15 on his way to a tie for fourth while Stuart Appleby shot 67 in the final round to climb into a tie for 14th.

Michael Wright (68) enjoyed his best finish on the PGA TOUR Champions with a tie for 17th as Cameron Percy finished tied 21st in his seniors debut.It was a near miss too for Rhein Gibson on the Korn Ferry Tour.

The New South Welshman eagled his final hole of the Visit Knoxville Open for a closing round of 4-under 66, one shy of the playoff won by Harry Higgs at the second extra hole.

Photos: Ryan Lochhead/PGA of America via Getty Images (Chalmers); Patrick McDermott/Getty Images (Green)

Australasian Results
PGA TOUR Champions
KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship
Harbor Shores, Benton Harbor, Michigan
1          Richard Bland               64-66-74-63—267      
2          Richard Green              64-71-70-65—270      
3          Greg Chalmers             69-68-66-68—271      
T4        Scott Hend                   68-68-70-66—272
T14      Stuart Appleby             70-69-72-67—278
T17      Michael Wright            69-67-75-68—279
T21      Cameron Percy             69-72-68-71—280      
T39      David McKenzie           72-72-71-70—285      
T57      Vijay Singh (FI)             67-77-73-72—289      
T67      Mark Hensby               68-71-77-76—292      
T75      Mick Smith                  72-70-74-78—294      
MC       Steve Allan                   73-73—146
MC       Michael Long (NZ)        72-74—146
MC       Rod Pampling              70-77—147
MC       David Bransdon           76-75—151
MC       Brad Burns                   72-81—153
DQ       John Senden                75-70—145
WD      Michael Campbell (NZ)

Charles Schwab Challenge
Colonial Country Club, Fort Worth, Texas
1          Davis Riley                   66-64-66-70—268      $US1.638m
T12      Adam Scott                  69-68-69-71—277     $180,635 
T24      Min Woo Lee                69-68-68-74—279 $70,866
T32      Ryan Fox (NZ)               68-67-71-74—280     $51,961         
T56      Cam Davis                   69-70-69-76—284      $20,839

DP World Tour
Soudal Open
Rinkven International GC, Antwerp, Belgium
1          Nacho Elvira                 64-64-67-71—266       €393,133.92
T7        Sam Jones (NZ)            62-70-70-67—269       €59,663.85
T48      Jason Scrivener            72-66-69-70—277       €9,096.04
T57      David Micheluzzi          69-69-68-72—278       €6,590.77
MC       Haydn Barron               72-72—144
MC       Daniel Hillier (NZ)         72-70—142

Ladies European Tour
Jabra Ladies Open
Evian Resort Golf Club, France
1          Morgane Metraux        67-64-72—203 €45,000
T5        Momoka Kobori (NZ)   72-71-67—210 €9,500
T27      Kirsten Rudgeley          72-72-73—217 €3,375
MC       Amy Walsh                   75-74—149

Japan Golf Tour
Road to the British Open Mizuno Open
JFE Seto Inland Sea Golf Club, Okayama
1          Ryosuke Kinoshita        69-66-70-71—276       ¥20m
T28      Michael Hendry           68-73-71-74—286       ¥670,000
T35      Brad Kennedy              69-74-69-75—287       ¥540,000
MC       Anthony Quayle           74-74—148

Korn Ferry Tour
Visit Knoxville Open
Holston Hills Country Club, Knoxville, Tennessee
1          Harry Higgs                 64-65-67-65—261      $US180,000
Won on the second hole of sudden death playoff
T3        Rhein Gibson               66-66-64-66—262      $44,375
T64      Dimi Papadatos           66-69-70-69—274      $4,010
MC       Brett Drewitt                68-72—140
MC       Jimmy Zheng (NZ)        73-69—142

Challenge Tour
Danish Golf Challenge
Odense Eventyr Golf, Odense, Denmark
1          Andreas Halvorsen       66-66-66-71—269       €43,200
MC       Andrew Martin             74-70—144
MC       Tom Power Horan        74-75—149
MC       Hayden Hopewell        77-73—150
MC       Connor McKinney        76-80—156

Korean PGA Tour
KB Financial Liiv Championship
Blackstone Golf Club, Icheon, Korea
1          Seungsu Han               72-67-67-71—277      
T55      Wonjoon Lee                73-71-75-74—293      
T58      Sungjin Yeo (NZ)          73-71-76-74—294      
MC       Kevin Chun (NZ)           77-71—148
MC       Junseok Lee                  82-69—151

Sunshine Tour
KitKat Cash & Carry Pro-am
Irene Country Club, Centurion
1          Kieran Vincent              67-67-67-66—267
MC       Austin Bautista             77-72—149

Headlines at a glance

Media Centre