Date: October 04, 2011

2010 recap: Ogilvy’s maiden Open triumph

2011 champion Geoff Ogilvy described the Australian Open as the &aposjewel&apos of the country&aposs golfing titles after claiming a breakthrough victory at The Lakes last year. The Victorian comfortably held off all challengers on the final day last year to complete a resounding four-stroke win, finishing the tournament 19-under par. He equalled the mark set jointly by Jack Nicklaus (1971) and Mark Calcavecchia (1988) and at one stage had Gary Player&aposs 45-year-old tournament record (24-under) in his sights. Ogilvy had several near misses at the Australian Open in the past, including a runner-up placing to John Senden in 2006. Etching his name alongside the likes of Australian golfing greats Greg Norman, Adam Scott and Steve Elkington hasn&apost been an obsession, but definitely a career goal. “I d love to win the (Australian) Masters my goal is to win every tournament I play but this is the real special one in Australian golf, this is the jewel,” Ogilvy declared. “Any year you win a golf tournament is exciting (and) any year you win the Australian Open you&aposre going to have to look back and think it&aposs a pretty special year.” “This is right up there.” Asked what it meant to have his name up there with some of golf&aposs biggest names, Ogilvy replied: “I don t mind where people put me in relation to the greats.” “I d like to win lots of big tournaments because winning tournaments is enjoyable.” “It&aposs a feeling of satisfaction. If I play like I think I can play, I think I&aposll have a reasonable career.” “The motivation isn t about how people talk about my career.” “It’s (the Australian Open win) definitely helped the year a lot,” Ogilvy said after a challenging nine months on Tour. Ogilvy headed into the final day at The Lakes holding a comfortable five-stroke lead over his nearest rivals. The tournament was his to lose and the 33-year conceded that made for an uneasy feeling. “It’s an odd feeling having a large lead on the first tee,” he said. “Today was probably the day I struggled the most with my game.” “Today I was least comfortable. The ball just wasn&apost going quite where I wanted it to go.” “I haven t had to test my short game out the first few days but today I had to, especially on the front nine.” “I got up and down a few times and made all the putts I needed to make.” In the calm conditions that had some players suggesting the course was too easy for such a prestigious tournament, Ogilvy played it safe and waited for those around him to falter. “There&aposs more of a mental challenge. You haven&apost given yourself the tournament but everyone else probably has,” he said. “I&aposd much rather go out with a lead but there&aposs that slightly uncomfortable feeling about a large lead.” “My attitude was &aposthey have to come and get me, I don&apost have to do anything special&apos.” “I thought if I kept playing the way I was playing I was destined to make two or three birdies and that meant he (playing partner and eventual joint runner-up Matt Jones) had to shoot eight or nine under.” “It was never panic stations.”