Larry Canning at the 2021 NSW Open: ‘Gotta love this game!’

Larry CanningLARRY CANNING reports from an “absolute ripper” NSW Open at the Concord Golf Club.


He’s a definitely unusual and quirky and but Bryden Macpherson’s victory in the NSW Open was a classic case of fronting the pressure and playing the best golf when all the other contenders couldn’t.

First it was New South Welshman Dale Williamson who sprinted around the front 9 in 31 blows to take the lead. It was probably more crappy luck than anything else that led to his demise after he blocked his drive on the 11th literally into a paper bark tree and it failed to drop to the ground. He had to face that dreaded walk back to the tee and wound up taking 7. He was clearly rattled and couldn’t find another birdie on his way in.

Bryden Macpherson on his way to victory. Photo: Golf NSW

Jack Thompson has had a crazy ride since turning pro just over three weeks ago. The first event for the South Aussie kid with the brilliant amateur record was the Players Series Tournament at Bonnie Doon where he shot three rounds of 65 to finish just 4 back of the winner. Jack held the lead today through 11 holes but like Williamson, sprayed his drives on both the 12th  and the short 13th  leading to two extremely badly timed bogey’s.

Talking about crazy rides… the wonderfully named Elvis Smiley also played his first tourney as a Pro at Bonnie Doon and with rounds of 68,67,69 (which included a triple bogey) and 65. This kid is going to do something very large in the game very soon and for all watching today it looked like it was just about to realize. The 18 year old youngster who looks like you could put a head cover on his scone and whack him in your golf bag, shot to the lead after birdieing the 15th to go to 17 under. A pushed drive on 17 lead to a catastrophic double bogey and the timely birdie by Mcpherson on 15 meant it was another great finish but no trophy for the young Queenslander.

While all this was going on, Bryden Mcpherson was staying tough, birdieing and parring everything he need to. This bloke is a serious player with a brilliant ball flight and a ton of grit.

The 2021 NSW open was an absolute ripper of a tournament and the huge crowds showed the Professional game in this country is back and pandemic free.

God I love this game!!

Also see:

Macpherson’s mental resolve helps secure 2021 #NSWOpenGolf 

Peter Senior: “Golf’s a number, not an age”

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