Betland wins berth in NSW Open

John Betland once again proved he is one of the best golfers in the country winning the Forbes Open on Sunday which has also qualified the talented right hander a place in this year's NSW Professional Open.

However, the win did not come easy.

After the regulation 18 holes it all came down to a play-off with Maitland's 19-year-old Hayden Gulliver after both players posted two under par rounds 70.

Both players are members of the Moore Park Golf Club No 1 Pennants Team and played the 18 holes as partners.

The play-off had all the drama befitting a very successful open tournament with fellow golfers and spectators clearing the 'Golfie' Hotel to line the first fairway and surround the first green late Sunday afternoon.

Both players saw their tee shots over the green resulting in chips and two putts for one over par four.

Players and supporters then moved to the 18th tee and green where both had the chance to win with birdie putts.

Putting first, Hayden left his chance short opening the way for John to sink a 20 foot putt for birdie and victory.

Earlier in the day it appeared Hayden had the title in his keeping, he was four under par after six holes recording birdies at the 2nd and 5th holes followed by an eagle at the 6th.

A bogey at the 7th then a disastrous five at the 9th after being in the bunker to chip over the green to fight for a double bogey and two under 35 on the front nine. A similar score on the back nine after a single birdie at the 17th hole.

In contrast John had to battle for his front nine score of three under par 33 with birdies and an eagle at the 6th and birdies at the 6th and 9th holes matched by a bogey at the 2nd.

John matched the 17th hole with a birdie and another at the 15th while recording bogeys at the 11th, 13th and 18th holes for one over par 37 before the drama of the sudden death play off.

Hayden was full of praise for the condition of the course and greens describing the whole weekend as amazing.

“I've had a great time and the course is really good and a challenge. Good luck to Big JB, a good win,” he said.

Despite rain early on Sunday morning which resulted in several late scratchings a field of 119 teed off. More than half were A grade players hoping to secure the ticket to the NSW Open.

More in Friday's Advocate.