Surf Coast Knockout: 6-hole match play format a huge success

Knockout match play format will be back again to Australian tournament golf

The Surf Coast Knockout tournament was won by Scott Laycock after he was the last of 32 golfers left standing on the final day in a world first for professional tournament golf.

Laycock’s victory was a real battle.

He only just made the Sunday action after he won a nine man playoff on Saturday for the final 32nd spot. He then defeated six players in the 6-hole format including four victories on the extra knockout hole.

scottlaycock“I feel like Keanu Reeves in The Matrix- dodging bullets,” said Laycock. “It’s really cool, I mean anyone in the final 32 could have won, but I just happened to be the one that pulled it off.”

A few tweaks could be made to make the format more exciting and perhaps even a little fairer.

The third round on Saturday featured 50 players, and 32 went through to the final Sunday match play rounds. This round seemed somewhat unnecessary and perhaps could have featured 64 players playing 18 hole match play to determine the final 32 players.

Peter O’Malley finished four shots ahead of everyone on Saturday afternoon. This meant little going into the Sunday matches and maybe organisers could work out some way to reward the top players from the previous three rounds. Maybe a free ride through to round 2 of the match play or they begin each match a hole in front?

All in all, the tournament was a huge success with the final day’s action proving compelling viewing in the made for TV concept. The few problems with the tournament I mentioned are minor and the Australian PGA should be congratulated for trying something different.

Let’s hope the concept stays and golf organisations from around the world are taking notes.

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