Smith triumphs in playoff to claim Australian PGA title

Queensland native comes from three shots behind in close finish to delight home fans

Cameron Smith gets a champagne shower following his victory in the Australian PGA Championship at the Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast. Photograph: Getty Images

Cameron Smith gets a champagne shower following his victory in the Australian PGA Championship at the Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast. Photograph: Getty Images

 

Home favourite Cameron Smith beat Jordan Zunic in a playoff to claim a dramatic victory at the Australian PGA Championship.

The 24-year-old was in his home state of Queensland at RACV Royal Pines Resort and he captivated the crowds, recovering from a bogey on his 72nd hole to get up and down for par twice during the play-off.

A bogey on the second extra trip up the 18th from Zunic handed Smith victory after the two had done battle throughout an enthralling morning on the Gold Coast.

Smith entered the final round three shots behind fellow Australian Zunic but had caught his playing partner by the 10th and a birdie on the 17th handed him the initiative with one to play.

A miss from 5ft on the final green meant extra holes were needed but Smith held his nerve to claim his first professional solo triumph after winning the Zurich Classic of New Orleans alongside Swede Jonas Blixt in May.

Australian Adam Bland finished a shot outside the play-off at 17 under, three shots ahead of countrymen David Bransdon and Marc Leishman.

England’s Nathan Kimsey carded a closing 65 to finish at 10 under, four shots clear of Sergio Garcia, who ended the year when he won his first major at the US Masters with a 74.

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