Drakeford wins prestigious Porter Cup

For some time an international victory had been in the making for Geoff Drakeford and on Sunday he held onto win the Porter Cup by a single shot over Americans Denny McCarthy and Beau Hossler at Niagara Falls Country Club in New York State.

A final round of 71 by Drakeford after earlier rounds of 67-66-68 was enough to secure his maiden international title.

Geoff Drakeford Geoff Drakeford (Credit: Anthony Powter)

22-year-old Drakeford is of classic Victorian country stock and the product of the Victorian Institute of Sport. He’s been knocking on the door of a major title this season which included runner-up finishes at the Southern Amateur and the Scottish Amateur.

It’s not been just these two occasions either where victory has slipped Drakeford’s hands.

Drakeford has been one of our standout performers over the last two years, both in the US and back in Australia, playing into contention in main amateur events only to see ‘Sunday woes’ get the better of his game.

This included a runner-up finish at the 2013 Federal Amateur and the Australian Amateur loss to Cameron Smith on Drakeford’s Victorian base at Commonwealth Golf Club.

Last week at the Southern Amateur, he held the final round lead from the 8th hole until hitting two balls in the hazard on the 175 yard par-3,16th resulting in a quintuple-bogey 8 to miss the title by three strokes.

Saturday’s victory in the US was a fitting result to one of our most guttiest amateur players.

With a ‘never-say-die’ attitude and a preparedness to attack a golf course with his gifted raw power, Drakeford is a player who will easily transition into the paid ranks.

With plans to attend European Q-School later in the year as an amateur, this week’s Western Amateur in Chicago will be Drakeford’s last event before returning to Australia.

“It feels really good,” Drakeford said on Sunday. “It’s been a long while since a ‘W’ has come around. It’s a great feeling and certainly sets me for the next stage. It’s such a confidence booster to get a win like this.”

This will be the first of many ‘W’s for Drakeford.

With set backs come toughness, something money cannot buy and which only comes from the school of hard knocks. Drakeford certainly has had his share of near misses, yet came through last Saturday in what was a classic victory this season and one well deserved.