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Morrinsville Golf Club’s Alex Lunn put in a consistent display to win the South Island Long Drive Golf Championships at Clearwater Golf Club over the weekend in testing conditions.
Lunn was too strong for Akarana Golf Club pro, Chase McKeown in the grand finale. But it was in semifinal in which he struggled initially before hitting the winning shot on his last ball to win over Iain Dick from St Andrews Golf Club in Hamilton with a drive of 269 metres, 10 more than his opponent.
With the wind turning from a breeze in the morning to a strong headwind as the day progressed Lunn was still able to hit a best distance of 282m to win the eight-ball final against McKeown who hit a top shot of 279m.
Earlier McKeown had accounted for Takapuna Golf Club’s Gareth Campbell in his semifinal with a best drive of 277m compared to his rivals 264m.
By winning the South Island tile Lunn advances to the final of the North Island Long Drive Championships in two weeks’ time.
The longest drive of the day was by McKeown with 295m in the second round while Paul West (Pupuke Golf Club, Auckland ) scored the second longest distance with 288m and 18-year-old Thomas Woods from Mirimar Golf Club tried his hand at Long Drive for the first time and managed a best distance of 285m.
Players now prepare for the North Island and New Zealand Long Drive champs Saturday 24 March at Omaha Beach Golf Club followed by the New Zealand Open featuring international players at the same venue the following day.
Both events reward the winners a place in the world long drive championships in the United States in September.