BLUFFTON, S.C. — It wasn’t exactly the way Daniel Nisbet wanted to win the Players Amateur, but it still counts. Officially, the 21-year-old Australian won the title by one shot over University of Alabama junior Bobby Wyatt, although his victory margin likely would have been even more impressive if the final round hadn’t been rained out and the scores reverted to 54 holes.
Nisbet opened with rounds of 69-66-70 and led Wyatt by one shot with an 11-under 205 entering the final round at Berkeley Hall Club’s South Course, and the next-closest player, Auburn senior Michael Hebert, was another seven shots back. That seemingly set up a two-player race for the title Sunday, but Nisbet quickly turned it into a rout, extending his lead to six strokes through 10 holes Sunday. That’s when thunderstorms struck the Lowcountry. When it was still raining more than 90 minutes later, Nisbet was declared the champion. And deservedly so.
While Wyatt struggled on the front nine, including back-to-back bogeys on Nos. 4 and 5, Nisbet made four birdies, including a chip-in from the fringe on the par-4 eighth hole. He is the second Australian to win the Players Am, joining 2004 champion Aron Price.
Nisbet will receive a sponsor exemption into the 2013 RBC Heritage at Harbour Town Golf Links on nearby Hilton Head Island as a reward for his Players Am title. He likely will do so as a professional, as he plans to attend PGA Tour Q-School later this year.