There’s an all-England final in the New South Wales Amateur in Australia with Scott Gregory and Marco Penge going head to head for the title.
They’ll play the 36-hole final at Terrey Hills Golf and Country Club, starting tonight at 2030 GMT.
Gregory, the Amateur Champion and world number ten, and Penge, a fellow member of the GB&I Walker Cup squad, are representing England Golf on a tour of Australia. Dave Tease from Golf NSW reports on their progress to the final:
The English pair have been roommates for the last four weeks but tomorrow it will be battle lines drawn. “We’ll be eating together tonight, and beating each other tomorrow,” Gregory laughed.
The 22-year old from Corhampton in Hampshire progressed through to the final after a dominant performance against Canberra’s Joshua Armstrong in the afternoon semi-final, winning easily 6&5.
He was five up after seven holes and, after losing the 8th hole, stamped his authority back on the contest with a match-defining birdie on the 9th hole to take a commanding five-hole lead.
“It can be tough when you’re that many up; You don’t let him have a run at you, if you lose a couple of holes they feel like they can get you back,” said Gregory.
“He gave me an opportunity on nine, and I took it. It was a big moment in the match; mentally it gave me a little bit,”
Gregory is relishing get the opportunity to meet his teammate in tomorrow's final. He believes the key will be sticking to his own game.
“It will be good fun to have a battle tomorrow, and get the win here,” he smiled.
“Marco is going to be 20 yards in front, so I know don’t try and keep up with him, just keep it straight and get the putter warmed up.”
Penge, from Golf at Goodwood in Sussex, has fought through all his matchplay rounds to get to the final, booking his place with a 3&2 win over Korean teenager Dongmin Kim.
“It’s been a battle every day. I’ve just been trying to dig in and get job done,” said Penge, who was fifth on the England Golf Order of Merit for 2016 after a season which included tying for the French amateur
The key to his semi-final, like most of his others in the tournament, was his ability to grab birdies when needed at critical times on the back-nine.
“I’ve been playing the 11th to the 16th well, I made three birdies there this morning, and two this afternoon,” he said.
Like his teammate Gregory, Penge is looking forward to the title decider which will be his first match play final.
“It is my first final ever, I’ve been dreaming about it, and I can’t wait to play one of my good mates,” he said.
Penge sees the match as a challenge against his more experienced teammate, but one he’s ready to face. “I know I will have to make a lot of birdies if I’m going to win. I’ll try and keep everything the same, focus on my own game and try and play steady golf.
“It’s our last day here, it’s going be a good one,” he smiled.
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Caption: Marco Penge (left) and Scott Gregory will go head to head in the final of the New South Wales Amateur.