Australian golf fans should take note of the name Curtis Luck after another stunning amateur victory.
Australia’s Curtis Luck overcame a seven-stroke deficit to secure a one-shot victory over compatriot Brett Coletta at the eighth Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship held at Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in South Korea.
Luck’s victory was played out in front of the green jacket wearing members of Augusta National, as a spot in The Masters and Open Championship was on the line. But to give you some idea of how well the 20-year-old Luck has been going, he had already secured those tickets six weeks ago (and the US Open) after his win at the prestigious US Amateur in August.
The world’s second-ranked amateur showed experience beyond his years, carding a bogey-free 67 to finish get on the clubhouse at 12-under-par (276). A birdie on the final hole came just moments after realising fellow countryman Brett Coletta had chipped in to draw level in the group behind on the 17th hole.
Luck had hit his second shot into a bunker, but splashed out to 15 feet and drained a curling putt, following it up with an emotional fist pump.
“It was a pretty nerve-racking finish as I knew Brett could make birdie on 18, so fortunately for me he didn’t,” said Luck. “That bunker shot was probably one of the most nervous shots I’ve ever had to play, and the putt just topped it off. I left myself a bit of a swinging putt, but I had a really good feel for it.”
While Coletta will rue a missed opportunity after missing his birdie putt to force a playoff on the 18th hole, the second place earns himself a spot in The 2017 Open Championship field in
“It’s really hard to swallow, but you’ve got to look at the positives. I’ve had three good rounds at a tournament I’ve never played before,” said Coletta, last year’s U.S. Amateur stroke play medallist.