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Kiwi Ben Campbell makes LIV Golf debut

Ben Campbell LIV Golf
Ben Campbell was even-par over two rounds in his LIV Golf debut. PHOTO: HONG KONG OPEN

Ben Campbell has become the second New Zealand golfer to tee it up in the breakaway LIV Golf league.

Campbell was called in as a reserve player for the second and third rounds of LIV Golf Miami at Trump National Doral after Ripper GC's Australian captain Cam Smith withdrew with illness.

The 32-year-old carded rounds of one-under 71 and one-over 73, producing three birdies and two bogeys on Saturday (Sunday NZ Time) and three birdies, two bogeys and a double-bogey on Sunday (Monday NZT).

An even-par score for three rounds would have put Campbell inside the top-30, however, he was credited with 54th. Ripper GC finished 10th of 13 teams.

Campbell currently sits 11th in this year’s International Series standings and 14th on the Asian Tour Order of Merit, both ways to earn a full-time LIV Golf card.

In 2023, he won the Hong Kong Open by one stroke over Smith for his third career win since turning pro in 2012.

Compatriot Danny Lee, the first Kiwi to play and win a LIV Golf event, finished in a share of 37th at four-over in Miami, 15 strokes behind the winner, South African Dean Burmester.

After a four-over 76 to open the tournament that featured two birdies, four bogeys and a double-bogey, Lee recovered over the weekend with a pair of even-par 72s.

The 32-year-old managed two birdies and two bogeys in the second round, before a colourful final round scoreboard. He made just seven pars, to go with two eagles, three birdies, five bogeys and a double-bogey.

Meanwhile, Lydia Ko finished tied for 18th at the LPGA Tour's mixed-format Match Play tournament in Las Vegas.

Ko signed for rounds of one-under 71, two-over 74 and four-over 76 to finish at five-over, missing the top-eight match-play part of the event by three strokes.

The 26-year-old was at two-over before three birdies in her last five holes got her into red numbers in the opening round. She made two birdies, two bogeys and a double-bogey on day two, before five bogeys and a solitary birdie on Saturday (Sunday NZT).

On the PGA Tour, Ryan Fox's preparation for The Masters continued to be rocky after missing the cut by four strokes at the Texas Open. Fox has missed the cut in five of eight events in 2024.

Fox opened with a two-under 70 on Thursday (Friday NZT) that featured seven birdies and five bogeys, but things went south quickly in a seven-over 79 in the second round.

The 36-year-old made back-to-back double-bogeys at the 10th and 11th holes to open his round, added another at the fourth hole, along with two bogeys and a lone birdie.


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