Millar's touch secures Murray Open title

Queensland young gun Elvis Smylie has finished tied third in the Murray Open.
Camera IconQueensland young gun Elvis Smylie has finished tied third in the Murray Open. Credit: AAP

Matt Millar proved precision can still trump power as he claimed a three-stroke victory in golf's Murray Open.

Millar, 45, fought gusting southerly winds and a host of powerful youngsters to card a 70 at Murray Downs on Friday, one day after torching the previous course record with a 64.

The Canberran professional's 10-under total was a masterclass in course management and the short game.

In the first regional qualifier for next year's Golf Challenge NSW Open, it enabled him to keep impressive Queenslanders Charlie Dann (-7) and Elvis Smylie (-6) at bay, while Wondonga's Daniel Gill was low amateur, also at six under.

"I'm really happy with that," Millar said after pocketing just shy of $9000 for his second win of the week after a triumph at the Cohuna pro-am en route to Swan Hill.

"I've been coaching a lot during Covid and so to come out and play well straight out of the blocks is great."

Remarkably, especially given Friday's testing wind, Millar made just one bogey in the 36-hole event.

Dann battled early, dropping from equal third overnight off the leaderboard with an outward 39.

But the Sunshine Coaster caught fire on the back nine, playing it in 31 including an eagle on the par-5 12th hole.

Teenager Smylie had the day's best round, a 68 to emerge from the pack for his fourth top-three finish in his past five starts in Australia.

Gill's impressive second-round 70 enabled him win one of three spots on offer - for those not already qualified - to play the NSW Open at Concord in March.

He will be joined in that field by NSW pair Lohn Lyras and Aaron Townsend, the latter a former champion of his state Open in 2008.

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