Monday, November 29, 2021

Keita Nazakima 1. Amateur Led From Asia-Pacific

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (NWN) – Japan’s Keita Najakima made a pair of 15-foot putts in the last three holes on Friday to level the last on the 18th hole, 4 under 67 and a shot lead. Asia-Pacific is progressing to the final round of the Amateur Championship.

This set the stage for a compelling finale at Dubai Creek and Yacht Club, with the winner taking a place at the next year’s Masters at St Andrews and the British Open.

Nakajima is the No. 1 amateur in the world. He has already won on the Japan Golf Tour this year, playing at a discount. He is looking to join Masters champion Hideki Matsuyama and former No. 1 amateur Takumi Kanya as the only Japanese winner of the event.

Just behind is Lin, who had 65 runs in his bid, becoming the Asia-Pacific Amateur’s only three-time winner since the start in 2009. Lynn, who began his college career in Southern California and now plays in Florida, won in 2017. and 2019. The tournament was canceled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nakajima was at 11-under 202.

The Japanese star took a tough par-3 16th position with a 15-foot birdie put to take the lead late in the round. At the closing hole, a wayward drive forced him to take a penalty drop, but he got away with a big par put.

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“I am really proud of the equal save on the 18th and a big birdie on the 16th. The last three holes on this course are very challenging, so it was good to finish them at 1 under,” said Nakajima. “A shot forward, I’m really excited to be in the position that I am. I just want to prepare well tomorrow morning. I feel very confident because of the way I finished.”

China’s Bo Jin, whose brother Chang Jin won the 2015 Asia-Pacific Amateur, held the lead until a bogey on the last two holes put him 70 and two shots behind South Korea’s Sam Choi.

Lynn got off to a strong start after finishing the second round with a double bogey, and the shot at No. 7 didn’t slow her pace.

“I’m really happy that I get to be in contention again. It would be nice to get a three-peat,” Lynn said. “I’ve gotten myself into this situation, and I’m going to enjoy tomorrow and see what happens.”

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