Cruel blow: Jones watches his lead vanish into the twilight

WHEN Brendan Jones came off the course as clubhouse leader more than an hour before the last players, his prospects of an Australian Open were bright.

But as the sun – hidden behind thick clouds hovering over the Lakes all afternoon – began setting, so too did his hopes of victory.

Peter Senior never looked like dropping a shot. In fact, the veteran picked up two birdies on the back nine in treacherous conditions that Jones admitted were up there with the worst he has played in.

All Jones could do was take cover from the strong winds on the clubhouse veranda and watch as Senior snatched the Open trophy from his grasp, holding on to his one-shot lead for the final six holes.

”Just sitting here and waiting has been harder than being out on the course,” a dejected Jones admitted.

”When you’re not in control it’s more difficult … I’ve been kicking myself that the one shot is what I’m going to be short, but at the same time, second in an Australian Open is good. I feel proud of the way I fought back today.”

While Jones was adamant Senior deserved to lift the trophy, he was critical of officials for their reluctance to suspend play due to heavy winds earlier than 11.43am. His round came to an abrupt end just moments after teeing off on the third, fighting against the strongest winds of the day, with gusts in excess of 80km/h.

”The thing that really annoyed me was earlier on today we were out there when we probably shouldn’t have been,” Jones said.

”The balls were rolling, not just where I was, but on other greens. It probably took them a little bit too long to make the decision to suspend it and in the end it’s probably cost me a bogey and a double on two and three … but who’s to say I would’ve gone and shot five under if I had have parred that?

”I was pretty angry and thought the world was against me, like most of us do out here, but I made par on five and birdied six. I missed some good opportunities on eight and 10 but to have five under through my last 12 holes was pretty good.

”I parred the first then I had some dramas on the second with the ball moving around.

”I thought it should’ve been called earlier than that but they made me putt. Then I hit off on the third and as soon as I hit off on the third they blew the siren.

”Where my ball finished on three was dead under a tree. When I went back out I made double there and bogeyed the fourth.”

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.


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