Plenty left for world cham­pion

Midland Reporter - - Sport - Matt Zis

MOVE over Phil Mick­el­son and Bubba Wat­son, be­cause the new world left-handed cham­pion is a teenager from Wood­vale.

John Boul­ton (19) en­sured he would have some­thing to boast about for life af­ter blitz­ing the field at the 25th World As­so­ci­a­tion of Left-Handed Golfers’ Cham­pi­onships in Mel­bourne last week.

And while Phil and Bubba prob­a­bly didn’t get the memo to play – and join a field of 214 left­ies from 17 dif­fer­ent coun­tries – Boul­ton won by a re­mark­able 20 shots.

The scratch golfer, who works at the Western Aus­tralian Golf Club in Yokine, ad­mit­ted the size of the win had stunned even him­self, as he fired a four-round to­tal of 5un­der on some of Mel­bourne’s most cel­e­brated Sand­belt cour­ses.

“That was def­i­nitely a bit of a shock. It was my low­est four-round score by about eight or nine shots,” he said. “I kind of blitzed it re­ally – it was a bit of a shock to me.

“My low­est pre­vi­ous round was 5-un­der and my low­est four-round to­tal was 4-over. Play­ing it in 5un­der was not what I was ex­pect­ing, es­pe­cially play­ing it blind as well.

“They were cour­ses that I’ve never ever played be­fore. I had plenty of tee shots where you’re look­ing at the fair­way and think­ing: ‘I’m not sure where this is go­ing to go’.

“You just hit a two-iron down there and hope for the best and luck­ily enough it was the mid­dle of the fair­way.

“I’m not some­one to brag but it is nice when some of the mem­bers come into the pro shop and men­tion that I’m a world cham­pion in my own lit­tle way.”

Boul­ton’s high­light was a sec­ond-round 67 at Wood­lands Golf Club, which he fol­lowed with a 69 at The Na­tional, to en­sure he went into the fi­nal round with an 18-shot ad­van­tage.

But even with that size­able cush­ion Boul­ton ad­mit­ted to feel­ing ner­vous, which was not helped by some good-na­tured sledg­ing from his play­ing part­ners dur­ing the fi­nal round.

“I was the most ner­vous be­fore the last round purely be­cause I had a lot of peo­ple say: ‘You wouldn’t want to be the guy that chokes from 18 shots up’,” the for­mer Lake­lands Coun­try Club mem­ber joked.

“And that was a cou­ple of the guys who were in the same group as me try­ing to put me off dur­ing the last day.”

Si­lenc­ing those doubts in his mind was more than ad­e­quate con­so­la­tion af­ter find­ing out that he could not bring the ma­jor tro­phy back to Perth - be­cause a pre­vi­ous win­ner had stolen it.

“Fun­nily enough they used to have a per­pet­ual tro­phy that you took home and kept for eight months and then you sent it back,” he said.

“One win­ner took it home and hasn’t re­turned it. That was about five or six years ago.

“They still haven’t tracked him down yet.”

John Boul­ton, of­fi­cially the world’s best left-handed golfer.

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