Munn recovers from horror start

23:00, Jan 31 2013

Trent Munn battled back on the opening day of the LawnMaster Classic yesterday after an early stumble to be in contention at three-under-par.

The Manawatu 18-yearold was three-over after only four holes in benign conditions, but there was to be only one more bogey for the New Zealand under-19 champion in his 69.

As he succinctly put it: "I had a bloody rough start. I had a couple of unlucky kicks and did well to make bogey."

Then he blazed away with seven birdies in his final 11 holes, including putting "a 30-footer [9 metres]" on the 17th, to be in a tie for ninth and the equal-fourth amateur

"When I was teeing off at 15, I restarted my mindset," he said.

The leading amateurs yesterday were Royal Wellington's Harry Bateman, last year's Lawnmaster winner at five-under alongside 18-year-old Waikato amateur Steven Kuggeleijn, son of former New Zealand cricketer Chris, in a tie for third.


New Plymouth's Steven Heyes, the 2011 New Zealand amateur runner-up, had a four-under 68.

Munn was the best Manawatu-Wanganui player ahead of Castlecliff's Tyler Lock (70), interprovincial player Lachie McDonald (Marton) who had 70 after five birdies and two bogeys but was annoyed with two three-putts, and Wanganui pro Riki Kauika (71). On even par were Manawatu greenkeeper Malcolm Wells, whose first priority was to present the course in top condition, Manawatu's Stu Smith and former Manawatu pro Paul Powell (Eaglehawk, Victoria).

The 60th man was on five-over-par, so the cut today could have been nine or 10 over.

North Harbour golfer Lita Guo celebrated her 17th birthday with a four-under-par 70 to lead the small women's field of 15 players.

The Remuera player won a bronze medal at the Youth Olympics in Sydney.

She led by three shots from Chantelle Cassidy (Putaruru) and Sai Ma (North Shore) who shot 73.

Manawatu Standard