The golf season is nearly a month old in Manitoba and for Brandon's Austin Dobrescu, the past 23 days have all been about preparation. If Golf Manitoba were to hold its championships, Austin would be front and centre.

Now, Dobrescu will tee it up in less than two weeks as he takes part in the Manitoba Amateur Match Play Championships qualifier which will be played at the Winkler Centennial Golf Course. A member at the Shilo Country Club, Dobrescu also plays at the Wheat City Golf Course as he works there.

99291136 2571730456422480 5355434552909103104 nThe June 6 and 7 event in Winkler will be Austin's first competitive action since last season. Last year also offered up some professional golf as he played in the Mackenzie Tour's Players Cup.

"I haven't played Winkler in quite a few years so I'm really excited to get out there," said Dobrescu. "I know a lot of people will bring their A-game so I'll have to be ready."

At last year's qualifier in Portage, Austin fired rounds of 76-73 which put him in a tie for 12th place. As the 15th seed, Austin won his first match 4&3 which put him up against the second seed and he had no problem winning that match also by a score of 4&3. Dobrescu would end up beating Colwyn Abgrall, 3-1, in the final to claim the match play championship.

If Austin qualifies for the main field this year which will feature 32 golfers, he'll get the chance to defend his title on one of the most prestigious golf courses in the province in St. Charles. 

Dobrescu fully expects to be in the 32 man field and when it comes down to the matches, he'll take each match as a new challenge, a challenge he's excited for.

"I'm just excited to be able to play some events again, it's not really about the pressure," he concluded. "If I play well, I should have a good chance of defending my title. I'll prepare pretty hard for the next couple of weeks and I'll be ready to go in Winkler."