Date: August 06, 2009
Author: Sportal

Appleby gunning for glory

Stuart Appleby hopes a change in fortunes over recent months will propel him towards a Presidents Cup berth. The Australian, currently ranked 90th on the world golf rankings, tees off in this week&aposs WGC Bridgestone Invitational and next week&aposs US PGA Championship with his eyes firmly on securing enough points to earn an automatic start. Appleby was a member of the 2007 Presidents Cup International team. “My form is on the up and improve but unfortunately I&aposve left it late in the year which is going to make it difficult to qualify and get into the FedEx Cup play-offs and Presidents Cup selection,” said Appleby. “I don&apost want to rely on maybe getting a captain&aposs pick so I really have to play well in the next two weeks. Then there are the two play-off events so I have to get myself into the 100 to get into those so I have two goals as well as needing to concentrate on my golf this weekend.” “I am playing good enough but I have to play one gear better than I am to be a contender in a tournament. It&aposs just a matter of getting it to all come together.” The 38-year-old will line up for the 11th time at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, Ohio in a field that contains eight Australasians and all 50 of the world&aposs top 50 players. Leading the pack is world No.1 Tiger Woods, who returns to Bridgestone for the first time since 2007 when he won the event. Woods missed last year&aposs tournament as he recovered from knee surgery. Appleby, however, takes plenty of confidence heading into the tournament. As the only player to have contested all 31 World Golf Championship events to date, Appleby has a record of six top 25 results in 10 appearances, including a runner-up finish to Vijay Singh last year. But 2009 has not been so kind, having made just 12 cuts from 19 starts and had one top-10 finish for the year. After a recent run of three made cuts, Appleby believes his form is turning around and will use his knowledge and past form in Ohio as he aims for his first victory in three years. “I was runner-up here last year so I know this course well and have some good memories here,” he said. “In saying that, I haven&apost had a lot of good weeks this year so I am always looking for the next week to be the breakout week.” “I&aposve had good results here to know I can play well so I&aposll use it as energy. There are enough good things I am doing so I just need to prove to myself that it can come to fruition. And it&aposs a great course to do that on. It&aposs a traditional good old golf course that plays well and if we can get some dry weather then it&aposs one of the top courses we play on tour.”