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Tuesday, April 18, 2006


Congratulations Aaron! Praise the Lord for your win, your life, your witness, and your ministry!

AARON Baddeley was reciting a bible verse to himself as he stepped up to the two-metre putt that gave him his breakthrough win on the US PGA Tour."This is for you, Jesus," said Baddeley as he struck the putt which rolled sweetly into the hole.

The former teenage phenomenon of Australian golf has become a young man of deep religious faith, so much so he wants to become an Assembly of God preacher during his golf career.

But faith in himself has been well tested as he battled to fulfil the high expectation produced by his bright start in a fickle sport.Yesterday's victory by one stroke from Jim Furyk in the Heritage Classic at Hilton Head gave Baddeley his first title in 103 US Tour starts.

It's been more than five years since his last win at the Greg Norman International in Sydney, and even longer since those 1999 and 2000 Australian Open titles."

I feel like I've been out here forever, and I'm only 25," said Baddeley after donning the garish plaid winner's jacket and becoming the fourth Australian winner on the tour in 2006 after Stuart Appleby, Geoff Ogilvy and Rod Pampling.

"I've been playing PGA Tour events since I was 18 and it does feel like a long time, but it's definitely worth the wait."

Ranked 199 in the world, Baddeley won a tense head-to-head final round duel with fellow overnight leader Furyk, shooting one-under 70 to win at 15-under 269, collecting $1.3 million and a two-year tour exemption.

He jumped out with three birdies in his first five holes, fell back to level with bogeys at the seventh and eighth and was two shots down after a bogey at the 11th.

But Baddeley then showed his mettle with birdies at two of the hardest holes on the PGA Tour the 14th was statistically the hardest par 3 on Tour last year and the 15th was the hardest par 5 to move in front for good. At the last, Furyk missed his four-metre birdie putt and Baddeley used his faith to help shut the door withhis par.

"I was reciting from 2nd Timothy 1:7 which is: 'God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and a sound mind'," said Baddeley.

"I kept repeating power, love and a sound mind." I had a nice read on the putt and said to myself 'this is for you, Jesus', and then I knocked it in." I was very peaceful. I knew I trusted my golf swing, and I think it showed."I definitely feel that a little weight has been lifted. This is a stepping stone to a bigger picture."

It sure is mate, and this blog will be praying for you, and your ministry!

Be encouraged!

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