GOLD COAST, Australia: Australian Nathan Holman won the European Tour co-sanctioned Australian PGA Championship in a three-way playoff at Royal Pines on Sunday.
Holman won on the first play-off hole with a par from American Harold Varner III and South Africa’s Dylan Frittelli.
Holman worked his way into contention for the play-off with a final round one-over 73 in tough playing conditions.
It was the second consecutive year the Gold Coast tournament was decided beyond the regulation 72 holes, but unlike last year’s marathon seven-hole playoff between Australians Greg Chalmers, Adam Scott and Wade Ormsby, only one hole was needed.
Holman, 24, held his nerve to make par on the 18th hole — one of the toughest in the new-look back nine at Royal Pines — while Varner and Frittelli both made bogeys.
The last international player to win the event was New Zealand’s Greg Turner in 1989.
For his victory Holman will receive a full European Tour card for the next two years following a new co-sanctioning agreement with the Australian PGA.
Holman, Varner and Frittelli all finished on even par 288 for the tournament, a reflection of the windy conditions and the uncompromising nature of the remodelled back nine.
Varner only narrowly missed a nine-foot putt at the last, which would have seen him claim outright victory.
Holman looked poised to win it much earlier until nerves set in and he gave up back-to-back bogeys on the final two holes — the only blemishes on his card aside from a double-bogey on the first.