A 20ft eagle putt on the final hole in regulation play of the 2018/19 PGA Winter Series in Southern China was enough for Rob Eastwood to force a playoff, which he went on to win, and secure his maiden OOM triumph since the Series conception in 2014.
The hotly contested Series was played from October through to April typically the ‘peak’ season for golf in this part of the world and consisted a total of 8 events. This year was also the first time the Series made the short journey across the border to Hong Kong where both Clearwater Bay Golf & Country Club and The Hong Kong Golf Club played host. The Grand Final was once staged at the magnificent Xili Golf & Country Club, Shenzhen where Eastwood is the resident Head Professional.
Reflecting on his victory, Eastwood commented “I am incredibly happy to have finally won the OOM after being so close the last 3 years and would like to congratulate all the players who played and supported the event. I would also like to thank our main sponsor Titleist for their amazing support throughout. Every Series to date had been incredibly close and this year I was delighted to end up at the top having led the series for most of the early stages.”
Eastwood was also quick to thank the Series other sponsors, McCawley’s Bar & Restaurants, and Stephen & Sons Shirts as without their support the series simply wouldn’t be as good. A special mention must also go to the facilities who host us, and for their continued support.
Eastwood’s remarkable finish snatched victory from George Thacker who ended up finishing second on the Titleist Order of Merit, after victories at Clearwater Bay and Xili earlier in the Series had given Thacker a 3- point lead going into the final.
2015 & 2016 OOM merit winner Brian O’Donovan, Mission Hills, and 2017 winner Andrew Smith, The Golf Academy Genzon finished in 3rd and 4th respectively. 2018 OOM winner, and current PGA trainee, Grant Jackson finished 6th in the overall standings after having to miss the final.
Over the course of the Series over 30 PGA professionals played in the events which are also open to local Chinese coaches and professional golfers. The aim of these events is not just to provide for some competitive golf, but also an opportunity to catch up and socialise with PGA professionals on a more regular basis.
If you are based in the region and would like to be involved in the 2019/20 Series please get in touch with Rob Eastwood (Robeastwood@xiligolf.com)