SYDNEY: Matt Jones followed in the footsteps of boyhood idol Greg Norman by winning the Australian Open on Sunday, holding off the challenge of world number one Jordan Spieth and former champion Adam Scott.
Australia’s Jones, 35, fought back from a horror start to his final round, dropping three shots in his opening two holes and also taking a triple bogey at the ninth, to win by a stroke.
The Sydney-born player regrouped to record a final round two over par 73 and claim the honours with an eight under par 276 total.
Spieth, the defending champion, birdied the last in a level par 71 to share second place on seven under with Scott (68).
The American also struggled early with bogeys at his first two holes and while he enjoyed a four-way share of the lead by his 11th hole, he stalled before ending with a birdie.
Rod Pampling carded a new course record 10-under par 61 to finish fourth, two off the pace, but did enough to join Jones and fellow Australian Nick Cullen (tied fifth) to earn the three qualifying spots into next July’s British Open.