Blake Windred has a couple of aunties who probably think golf is pretty easy. Their first exposure to the game came while watching him on the final day of the AVJennings NSW Open, a round that saw him shoot the best score in the field, a 7-under 65.
Windred finished 15-under-par for the four rounds at Twin Creeks Golf and Country Club, good for a share of third place as well as claiming low amateur honours.
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He was also low amateur at last week’s Queensland Open and credited much of his final round brilliance to playing in front of family and friends, some who had no previous exposure to the game.
“I’ve got a couple of Aunties who came along and they’ve never seen any golf at all, probably not even on TV,” he said.
“They knew I played but that was about it so I think they would have been pretty happy with what they got to see.
“It was a buzz for me because I almost never get to play in front of my family and to have a whole lot of the here was fantastic.
“I think Dad must have sent out a group text or something to get people here because there were a few people there I hadn’t seen for ages.”
Windred amassed an impressive nine birdies on the day, his only blemish a double bogey at the par-4 fourth.
Playing alongside fellow amateurs David Micheluzzi and Japan’s Ren Yonezawa, he said he felt the group could produce something special right from the first hole.
“It’s just such a comfortable group to be playing with two other amateurs and we were starting a long way back from the lead,” he said.
“But I said to David on the first ‘Let’s just go as low as we can. Let’s try to shoot 10-under because it’s possible and we’ll need to if we’re going to have a chance.’”
The pep talk must have worked because Micheluzzi birdied each of the first three holes while Windred was 2-under for the same stretch though both had their troubles at the fourth.
Windred recovered beautifully, however, and after going to the turn 3-under hardly put a foot wrong on the way to the clubhouse including making birdies at each of the last two holes.
“I could have hit the ball better to be honest but I was just determined to play good,” he said. “Especially at the finish there, I really just wanted to get those last couple of birdies and even though I didn’t feel great with my swing I just sort of made it happen.”
Windred isn’t yet in the field for next week’s Australian Open at The Lakes but said he was comfortable ahead of pre-qualifying tomorrow.
“It’s a bit of a lottery with just 18 holes and being completely different to what we’ve been playing the last four days,” he said.
“But my game’s been pretty sharp the last couple of week so hopefully that will keep going and I can make it through.
“I haven’t played at The Lakes for a while but I liked it when we were there at the Australian Amateur a few years ago so it would be great to get a start.”