Aussies on Tour: US awaits for Stephanie Kyriacou, Hend goes close in Thailand

Aussies on Tour is a regular wrap of how Australia’s top men and women golfers are performing on the world’s golf tours and is provided by Golf Australia, the PGA of Australia and the WPGA.

Stephanie Kyriacou will arrive at the LPGA Tour’s Q-Series with a bolstered bank balance after ending the Ladies European Tour season third on the Order of Merit.
 
Fourth in the Race to Costa del Sol standings heading into the Andalucia Costa Del Sol Open De Espana season finale, Kyriacou (pictured above) closed with a round of three-under par 69 that had periods of wild fluctuations.
 
The recently turned 21-year-old burst out of the blocks with three straight birdies to start her final round before dropping a shot at the par-3 fourth.
 
Further birdies followed at six and eight yet a double-bogey at the par-4 ninth sent Kyriacou into the back nine two-under on her round.
 
The final nine holes of the season was more subdued with a lone birdie at the par-4 13th enough to elevate Kyriacou into a share of fifth, 10 shots behind runaway winner Carlota Ciganda.
 
Her eighth top 10 of the year moved her ahead of Finland’s Sanna Nuutinen by just 107.97 points and triggered a €50,000 ($A79,459) share of the bonus pool awarded to the top three finishers on the Order of Merit.
 
The top-five on the Order of Merit also receive exemption into the LPGA Tour’s Q-Series starting in Alabama next week, opening the door for Kyriacou to potentially play both tours in 2022.
 
“I’m happy I played well and got third, also happy I have the opportunity to go to the States and try to get on the LPGA Tour,” said Kyriacou, who has played 22 events on the Ladies European Tour this year.
 
“It is going to be a quick turnaround with getting over the jet-lag, but the important thing is I have the opportunity.
 
“If I got status on both tours, I would probably do a bit of both – it depends on which tournaments clash with what. We will figure that out when the time comes.”
 
Although a Sunday 76 was not how she would have liked to have signed off it also marked the end of Whitney Hillier’s most consistent season, the West Australian finishing tied for 23rd in Spain to end the year 45th on the Order of Merit.
 
Scott Hend’s quest for an 11th Asian Tour title went deep into Sunday but came unstuck with a wayward 5-wood at the par-5 15th at the Blue Canyon Phuket Championship in Thailand.
 
Going for the green in two, Hend’s approach went right and couldn’t be found, the Queenslander unable to save par despite finding the green with his second attempt.
 
A closing 67 earned Hend a share of fourth just two shots behind the victor from Chinese Taipei, Chan Shih-chang, fellow Australian Travis Smyth marking his return to the Asian Tour with his second 65 of the week and a top-10 finish as Sam Brazel (67) finished 20th in his first international event since December 2019.  
 
Dylan Perry was the best of the Aussies in the penultimate event of the Japan Golf Tour season, finishing tied for 22nd at the Casio World Open to move to 66th on the moneylist, one spot ahead of Anthony Quayle who was the only other Aussie to make the cut.
 
Results
Ladies European Tour
Andalucia Costa Del Sol Open De Espana
Los Naranjos Golf Club, Marbella, Spain
Winner Carlota Ciganda (SPA)       70-66-70-67—273             €90,000
T5           Stephanie Kyriacou         74-69-71-69—283             €20,100
T23         Whitney Hillier                  72-70-71-76—289             €7,452
 
Asian Tour
Blue Canyon Phuket Championship
Blue Canyon CC (Canyon Course), Phuket, Thailand
Winner Chan Shih-chang (TWN)     66-68-68-68—270             $US180,000
T4           Scott Hend                        69-71-65-67—272             $38,200
T10         Travis Smyth                     73-65-72-65—275             $16,480
20           Sam Brazel                        72-70-68-67—277             $11,550
T23         Wade Ormsby                   69-69-71-70—279             $10,000
T63         Jake Higginbottom            76-67-72-74—289             $2,850
MC         Andrew Martin                    73-71—144
MC         Ben Campbell                    72-74—146
MC         Will Heffernan                    74-72—146
MC         Josh Younger                     74-73—147
MC         Kevin Yuan                         75-73—148
MC         Ben Eccles                         75-76—151
MC         Cory Crawford                    76-75—151
MC         David Gleeson                    91-90—181
 
Japan Golf Tour
Casio World Open
Kochi Kuroshio Country Club, Kochi
Winner Mikumu Horikawa (JPN)       64-65-73-67—269             ¥30m
T22         Dylan Perry                        73-66-70-70—279             ¥1,590,000
T63         Anthony Quayle                  69-70-75-72—286             ¥334,500
MC         David Bransdon                  69-76—145

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