Australian Murray Lott has claimed the 2024 Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa NZPGA Seniors Championship impressively, holding his nerve during the final nine holes to win by a shot.

The Queenslander needed to come back to Hanmer Springs Golf Club this morning to complete his opening round after play was abandoned late yesterday due to inclement weather. The rain didn’t dampen Lott’s form as he finished his opening round with five birdies, recording a five-under-63 on the par 68 layout.

He led New South Welshman Scott Ford by a shot heading into his final round this afternoon but got off to a shaky start, making a couple of bogeys and a birdie in his opening nine to fall behind. Lott, who coaches full-time at Victoria Park in Brisbane showed his mental fortitude, making two birdies coming home to win his fourth Australian Legends Tour title.

Lott says he’s ecstatic to lift the trophy, especially as he'd never played Hanmer Springs Golf Club before.

“I obviously played really great and had five-under. I made plenty of putts and didn’t make a bogey which I thought was pretty key around here – it’s pretty easy to make simple bogeys.

“The first round set me up nicely for round two. I played pretty solid in the second round – I just missed a couple of greens early on and made some soft bogeys, but I was really solid on the back nine and managed to make a couple of birdies coming home.

“Fortunately, I was able to hang on and claim the victory – it’s a sweet win.”

The Queenslander plays as many Australian PGA Legends events as possible outside of his family commitments. His New Zealand trip continues for the next week, where he will play the St Clair Legends Pro-Am, North Otago Legends Pro-Am, and the Tokarahi Legends Pro-Am.

Mark Boulton finished a narrow one-stroke behind Lott, shooting rounds of 66 and 65. Like Lott, Boulton needed to return to the course at 7am to complete his opening round.

Ford finished in a share of third alongside Martin Peterson at four-under-par, with Bradley Burns a further shot back in solo fifth. Martin Pettigrew finished as the leading Kiwi in sixth at two-under.

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