Flinders' Travis Smyth turns focus to NT PGA title defence

Green and bold: Port's Debbie Byrnes, seated third from right, with the Australian Team at the Opening Ceremony of the World Deaf Golf Championships.
Green and bold: Port's Debbie Byrnes, seated third from right, with the Australian Team at the Opening Ceremony of the World Deaf Golf Championships.

Flinders’ Travis Smyth has turned his focus to defending his Northern Territory PGA crown after finishing tied 18th placing at last weekend’s Fiji International at Natadola Bay International Golf Course.

Smyth carded rounds of 71.70,72 and 73 for a two under par total in the event which was eventually taken out by India’s Gaganjeet Bhullar on 14 under par.

“I did it tough on the weekend,” Smyth said.

“I didn’t hit it as good and the wind just threw my ball around.

“To come out and only shoot +1 on the final day, well, I’m okay with that.

“It could have been a lot worse.

“It was a solid week. I really feel that my game is trending up.”

Travis’ next start will be a defence of his 2017 NT Championship win, beginning August 16. 

In recognition of last year’s win in the Northern Territory, Travis’ club sponsor, Ping, presented him with a gold replica of the putter he used to win his maiden professional tournament.

Two replica gold putters are created, one for Travis and the other kept at the gold putter vault at in Phoenix, Arizona.

Winner: Travis Smyth with the gold putter made in honour of his NT PGA win.

Winner: Travis Smyth with the gold putter made in honour of his NT PGA win.

INTERNATIONAL SUCCESS

Port Kembla’s Debbie Byrnes has played an integral part in the Women’s Australian Team that has finished runners-up to Germany at the World Deaf Golf Championship, which wrapped up last week at Carlton House in Ireland.

The Powerhouse German outfit ran away with the women’s title, winning by 26 shots, with the Aussie outfit relegating the US team into third place by nine shots.

Byrnes posted consistent rounds of 85, 84, 85 and 88 for a total of 342 to finish in 10th place in the individual standings. 

The Australian Men went one better than their female counterparts, taking out the Team’s championship by 17 shots from the United States.

IT’S A KNOCKOUT

Wonoona’s Thomas Heaton qualified for the matchplay rounds of the English Amateur Championship which was played at Formby and Hesketh Golf Clubs.

His 36 hole qualifying score of 145 was good enough to finish in 59th position.

However, he fell in the first round of the knockout stage to England’s Rhys Lawrence on the 20th hole.

Next up for Heaton is the boys St Andrew’s Open at the home of golf, his second event at the famous courses in Scotland.

Talent: Thomas Heaton will play at St Andrew’s. AAP Image/Brendan Esposito

Talent: Thomas Heaton will play at St Andrew’s. AAP Image/Brendan Esposito

DYNAMIC DUO

Kiama Golf Clubmates Mark Cull and Neill Dell will represent the Illawarra in NSW Keno Men’s Fourball Championship, after taking out the regional final at their home course last weekend.

Twenty pairs fought out the final, with Cull and Dell returning a score of +11 in the 4BBB par event to blitz the field.

The Grange Golf Club pair of Cameron Smith and Mark Hackett finished second on +3.

The state final will be played at Bonville Golf Resort, near Coffs Harbour, in the first week of October.