• Weather halts Webex Players Series Hunter Valley

Phoenix Campbell will again sleep on the lead of the Webex Players Series Hunter Valley after play in the third round was suspended due to storms on Saturday at Oaks Cypress Lakes Resort, with the final group two holes into their round.

Lightning in the area caused play to be halted at 2:42pm local time, with heavy rain arriving during a suspension, which was extended due to electrical activity before a final attempt to restart play at 6:15pm Saturday was officially called off at 6:05pm.

“The course was deemed unplayable at 6:05pm. Round three will resume at 7:30am Sunday,” Tournament Director Peter Welden said.

“The course Superintendent will be busy for the rest of Saturday, and in the early hours of Sunday, to get the course ready to play the third and fourth rounds.”

Round three will resume at 7:30am when players will start from where they marked their ball and finish the third round, which 19 players completed before the weather hit the Hunter Valley region.

Once the third round is completed on Sunday, the field will be redrawn, with a decision on the format of the final round to be decided on Sunday morning once an updated weather forecast is available.

The final round estimated to commence at 12:30pm (AEDT) on Sunday, with the All Abilities and Junior events to be concluded following the completion of 18 holes in the morning.

Of those that finished, five-under 65 was the best round of the day, with Josh Younger and Dylan Gardner lifting themselves into a share of 19th on six-under overall, while Kathryn Norris was one shot better in a share of 16th.

At the top of the leaderboard, Campbell sits at 13-under with a two shot advantage over playing partner Daniel Gale after starting par-par to Gale’s bogey-par start.

Gale level with Queensland amateur Justice Bosio, who is five-under on the day through nine holes. The trio of Kotono Fukaya, Tunrada Piddon and Jess Whitting another shot back on 10-under.

Campbell leaning on recent experience in December during the extended delay to remain relaxed, all the while staying ready to play when notified.

Players mixing in the clubhouse, with some choosing to simply sitting in conversation while others played pool or darts. Constant checks of the Bureau of Meteorology website and app a common theme.

“I was telling Deano (caddie Dean Kinney), Sandbelt Invitational when we came off at my home club, was probably the last time we had a bit of rain, thunderstorm delay. Relatively inexperienced, but just take it on the chin, use it tomorrow,” Campbell said.

The same event where Campbell had his most recent weather delay experience was won by Gale, who believes he might hold an advantage on a marathon final day where the pair will play 34 holes.

“I think so. I want to say I am one of the fitter blokes out here. I guess all that training, balls you hit, the big training sessions, it’s for days like tomorrow,” he said.

Whitting and Piddon joking of memories of American college events playing 36 holes in a day as preparation for Sunday, while the rest of the chasing pack will hope finishing their round earlier could be of assistance in chasing down 22-year-old Campbell.

Included in those a six strong group on nine-under-par that contains three-time Webex Players Series winner in 2024 Kazuma Kobori, who will resume from the middle of the 4th fairway.

The only place to watch every upcoming event on the Challenger PGA Tour of Australasia live is on Fox Sports, available on Foxtel and Kayo.

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