Papadatos stays cool to win 2017 Oates Vic Open

Dimitrios Papadatos ground out a two stroke victory at Thirteenth Beach. Photo: Golf Victoria

TOUGH weather conditions didn’t make things easy in the final round of the 2017 Oates Vic Open but New South Welshman Dimitrios Papadatos again produced the goods for a solid win.

Papadatos fired a final round 1-under 71 at the Thirteenth Beach Golf Links in Barwon Heads for his second  ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia victory but first on home soil after he won the 2014 New Zealand Open.

The 25 year old ended the tournament on 16-under, two shots ahead of Adam Bland and Jake McLeod.

“It was a massive grind. I knew it was going to be a long tough day but I played pretty solid golf and didn’t take too many risks,” Papadatos said.

“I was right up there so I didn’t need to chance my arm too much.”

Finishing the group ahead of his nearest rival, Jake McLeod, Papadatos watched to see if the Queenslander could make an eagle on the 18th to force a playoff.

“It was a little bit nerve racking but I wasn’t too worried about it,” added Papadatos.

“I did my job and if Jake made an eagle on the last it would’ve been fantastic to go to a playoff but I wasn’t thinking about it too much.”

Between his two victories in NSW and Victoria, Papadatos has spent time competing on the European Tour, learning a tough lesson about what it takes to compete at the top echelons of world golf.

“I learned a lot last year and realised I had a lot of work to do,” he said.

“As hard as it was, as much I hated it over there and had a miserable time, I think it’s paid off to know what to expect when I get over there next time.

“Obviously I’m playing better than what I was in Europe. I’ve found a bit of form but the guys over there are really good.

“If I played like I did this week, over there, I’d be right up there, but week in week out I’ve got a bit of work to do.”

Coming home at the end of 2016, Papadatos committed to working hard, forgoing a Christmas break to ensure he was primed for the start of the 2017 season.

The hard work has paid off and he returns to the European Tour this week via the tri-sanctioned ISPS HANDA World Super 6 Perth buoyed by confidence from his Oates Vic Open win.

For his win Papadatos collected AUD$90,000, the winner’s share of the AUD$500,000 up for grabs. This shoots him to the top of the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasian Order of Merit early in the season.

With McLeod and Bland sharing runner-up honours, veterans David McKenzie and Richard Green finished tied 4th on 13-under the card.Rounding out the top-10 on 12-under the card were Adam Blyth, Max McCardle, David Bransdon, Lucas Herbert, Jake Higginbottom and leading amateur Min Woo Lee.

The ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia now heads to Lake Karrinyup Country Club for the ISPS HANDA World Super 6 Perth.

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Brian is a former Sydney journalist who didn’t have a skerrick of interest in golf till he hit his first ball at the age of 49 (and a half). Since then golf has just about overtaken his life. Brian founded Australian Senior Golfer in April 2008 and has since covered every Australian Open, Presidents Cups, World Cups and numerous other big men’s and women’s tournaments, spending days inside the ropes with the likes of Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy, Tom Watson, Greg Norman, Adam Scott, Jason Day, Karrie Webb, and many others. He has also played in, and reported on, amateur tournaments, particularly senior and veteran events, around the country. Brian is a member of the Australian Golf Media Association.

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