Friday, 19 March 2010
2008 Australian Masters: Day 4  (Getty Images)
2008 Australian Masters: Day 4 (Getty Images)

Rod Pampling has won the Sportsbet Australian Masters after edging out Marcus Fraser at the third play-off hole at Huntingdale Golf Club after the two Australians finished locked at the top of the final round leaderboard on 12 under par.

Victorian Fraser carded a brilliant final round seven under par 65, which included just one bogey, while Pampling signed for a fourth round 65 despite having birdie chances at his last three holes which would have sealed the win.

With Fraser, 30, sat on the practice range, Queensland's Pampling had three opportunities to claim the victory in regulation but after missing a chance at 16, pushed a six foot birdie putt at 17 right.

At the last 39 year old Pampling took his time to line up a 25 foot Championship putt, but again missed his chance as the ball drifted left of the hole.
Both players missed long birdie chances on the first trip down the 18th, which saw just one fourth round birdie in regulation, before Fraser found rough off the tee and sand with his second on the return trip down the 18th.

Pampling found the middle of the fairway but his approach failed to clear a bank at the front of the green and rolled back onto the fringes.

After Fraser chipped to the back of the green, Pampling put the pressure on his opponent after getting to within a foot, but Fraser converted from ten feet to ensure a third play-off hole.

Fraser again missed the green into the 18th and after putting past the hole up a steep hill at the back of the green, missed a par putt and was forced to settle for a bogey to open the door for Pampling.

And he did not turn down the opportunity as he claimed his first Sportsbet Australian Masters green jacket with a simple three foot par putt to claim his first victory on The European Tour.

"I played great and I hit a lot of quality shots and that's all I kept telling myself every time we got back to the 18th tee was, 'hit a shot, hit a shot'," Pampling said.

"There was no stress at any stage."

Faced with a wait of 40 minutes or so to see what Pampling could come up with, Fraser spent much of the time trying keep his wife Carlie, who is eight months pregnant, from becoming overexcited.

Fraser revealed later that Carlie had already been to hospital earlier in the day and returned there after play had finished showing signs of an early labour.

"I just hope that she's alright and the baby's okay, that's the priority," Fraser said.

"Golf's not even in the picture. The last two days is the best golf I've played by a country mile - I feel like I'm back to the way I should be playing. I reckon I'm going to get my hands on that trophy one day."

Joint overnight leader Robert Allenby, a two time champion, was in contention heading into the final holes at 11 under, but was forced to rescue a double bogey five at the 15th as he holed a 20 foot putt after chipping out of a greenside bunker and finished alone in third at nine under after a 73.

South Africa’s Tim Clark (67), Australia’s Nathan Green (70) and Sweden’s Alexander Noren (68) finished tied for fourth at eight under.

Australia’s David McKenzie (68) finished seventh at seven under, while joint overnight leader Michael Sim finished seven shots off the pace following a 77.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
T1FRASER, MarcusAUS18-12
T1PAMPLING, RodneyAUS18-12
3ALLENBY, RobertAUS18-9
T4NOREN, AlexanderSWE18-8
T4GREEN, NathanAUS18-8
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