Date: May 22, 2007
Author: Alistair Hogg

Aussies Around The World: Weekend Review

By Alistair Hogg PGA TOUR Gavin Coles and Steve Elkington flew the flag in Georgia in what was an otherwise disappointing tournament for Australia. The pair finished nine and eight-under respectively to be the best-placed Aussies. Elkington was in the hunt going into the Sunday, but a final round 73 derailed any hopes of victory. Coles meanwhile finished positively with an eagle and a birdie to jump to equal-14th. US Masters winner Zach Johnson expressed his love for Georgian golf courses with a win at TPC Sugarloaf. The American carded a final round 67 to tie for first at 15-under but went on to win an exciting playoff against Japan&aposs Ryuji Imada. Australian results at The AT&T Classic at TPC Sugarloaf, Georgia Steve Allan 74 78 (MC) Steven Bowditch 74 74 (MC) Gavin Coles -9 (T14) Steve Elkington -8 (T16) Matthew Goggin 76 73 (MC) Paul Gow 74 73 (MC) Mark Hensby +1 (T62) Peter Lonard 73 73 (MC) Jarrod Lyle 76 79 (MC) Michael Sim 71 77 (MC) NATIONWIDE TOUR Nick Flanagan registered three straight birdies to close the BMW Charity Pro-Am and win his second straight Nationwide Tour title. The 22-year old posted a sterling seven-under par final round to snatch a one-stroke victory from American Nicholas Thompson. Flanagan&aposs day started with a bogey on the second but that was the last time the Aussie would be over the card during his final round. Despite hitting back with a birdie on the third, Flanagan&aposs front nine was relatively modest. It wasn&apost until getting through the turn that the Belmont local really cut loose. A run of three-straight birdies between 11 and 13 saw him rocket up the leader board and another hat-trick of birds to close out the event handed Flanagan the title, and a brand new car. The win makes Flanagan the first player since 2005 to record back-to-back Nationwide Tour victories. It also takes him to the top of the money list and all but cements his place in the Top 25come season&aposs end. Flanagan will now head straight to a qualifying event aiming to make the final field of the US Open at Oakmont Country Club, the scene of his US Amateur triumph in 2003. Australian results at the BMW Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs, South Carolina Greg Chalmers 72 76 67 (MC) Jason Day 75 75 68 (MC) Kim Felton 74 78 73 (MC) Nick Flanagan -7 (1) Scott Gardiner -2 (T43) Bradley Hughes 80 72 71 (MC) Matthew Jones +5 (60) David McKenzie E (T24) Aron Price 73 73 70 (MC) Richard Swift -4 (T30) EUROPEAN TOUR Just two Australians made the cut in what proved to be a very challenging Irish Open at Adare Manor. Richard Green and 2004 champion Brett Rumford were the sole Aussies standing after Friday&aposs cut as six of their countrymen bowed out. After an opening round 80 it appeared as though Rumford would also have the weekend off, but a one-under second round of 71 kept the West Australian alive – all be it too far down the leader board to make a serious challenge. Green however was even with the card at the half-way mark and well in contention. The Victorian had a consistent third round which included 15 pars, two birdies and a double bogey. His final round however was an up-and-down affair with the left-hander unable to settle into any rhythm. Green only carded one par in the opening five holes and although he was trading birdies and bogeys, he did not make enough of an early inroad into the leader board. Green&aposs final round of 72 left him even with the card overall and tied for fourth position alongside South African Louis Oosthuizen. Only three players were able to get their final score below par including Simon Wakefield (-1), Bradley Dregde (-5) and Padraig Harrington (-5) who defeated Dredge in a sudden-death playoff to be the first Irishman in 25-years to win his home open. Australian results at the Irish Open at Adare Manor and Hotel & Golf Resort, Ireland Marcus Fraser 74 78 (MC) Richard Green E (T4) Matthew Millar 79 78 (MC) Peter O&aposMalley 77 79 (MC) Wade Ormsby 78 74 (MC) Terry Price 83 76 (MC) Brett Rumford +11 (T52) Andrew Tampion 78 80 (MC) ASIAN TOUR Richard Moir came agonisingly close to a maiden Asian Tour win but he became the second Aussie to fall in a playoff on Sunday. The Australian carded a final round 69 to force extra holes against Taipei&aposs Wen-teh Lu but a par on the third extra-hole was not quite enough to clinch the Macau Open trophy. Lu shot a blistering 65 on the final day as the tournament was shortened to three-rounds due to inclement weather. He then fired three consecutive birdies on the par-five 18th to pip the Australian. Defending champion Kane Webber finished in a respectable tie for sixth and Mitchell Brown was a further shot back in equal ninth. Australian Results at the Macau Open at Macau Golf and Country Club, Virginia Scott Barr -2 (T45) Neven Basic 69 75 (MC) Shane Baxter 70 79 (MC) Rowan Beste 71 76 (MC) Marcus Both 71 72 (MC) Mitchell Brown -7 (T9) Tony Carolan +6 (T65) Gavin Flint -4 (T28) Peter Fowler 75 72 (MC) Pat Giles 79 73 (MC) David Gleeson 73 72 (MC) Adam Groom 76 71 (MC) Ashley Hall -2 (T45) Scott Hend -4 (T28) Brad Kennedy -6 (T14) Troy Kennedy 74 71 (MC) Jason King 75 73 (MC) Adam Le Vesconte -1 (T54) Leigh McKechnie -6 (T14) Nathan Main 75 68 (MC) Richard Moir -12 (2) Jarrod Moseley -4 (T28) Unho Park -3 (T39) Gary Simpson -4 (T28) Scott Strange -6 (T14) Kane Webber -8 (T6) Michael Wright -2 (T45) LPGA TOUR Karrie Webb carded a final round three-under to finish in a share of eleventh at the Sybase Classic in New Jersey. The Queenslander registered five birdies and two bogeys on her way to a 69. Wendy Doolan was the next-best Aussie at four-over while veteran Rachel Hetherington was seven-over for the tournament. Katherine Hull missed Friday&aposs cut by three strokes. Mexican Lorena Ochoa successfully defended her title finishing a remarkable 18 strokes under the card. Her nearest rival, Sarah Lee, was 15-under, a further six shots clear of Se Ri Pak. Australian results at the Sybase Classic at Upper Montclair Country Club, New Jersey Wendy Doolan +4 (T38) Rachel Hetherington +7 (T48) Katherine Hull 74 77 (MC) Karrie Webb -4 (T11) LADIES EUROPEAN TOUR Anna Rawson almost made it a hat-trick of Aussie wins on the Ladies European Tour but the 25-year old fell just short, losing a playoff to German Bettina Hauert. The Australian was six-under for the tournament heading through the turn and all but threw the tournament away carding four bogeys in seven holes. A birdie salvaged on the 18th saw Rawson limp into a three-way playoff for the title alongside Spaniard Paula Marti and Hauert, who birdied her final three holes. The German won the playoff with a four-foot birdie putt on the fourth extra hole to clinch the title. Rawson was eliminated on the second playoff hole after only making par on the 18th. It was a case of &aposwhat could have been&apos for Rawson who despite carding an even final round, posted four bogeys on the back nine to diminish her chances of victory. Prior to that point she led the field by four shots. The South Australian also had an eagle putt for the in on the 72nd hole but could not get it to drop. Despite the result, Rawson was upbeat and offered this advice to anyone faced with a playoff. “Never get in one!” she joked. However the Aussie continued, “It was very good for me. It was fun and I had a blast.” Though Rawson was also pensive as she recalled the latter part of her final round. “It was a little disappointing to be six-under at the turn and then drop four shots on the back nine,” she said. “I think I looked at the leader board a bit too much. I three putted three times on holes 10, 13 and 16 so three less putts and I would have been a winner but it happens.” “I didn t think there was any way that Paula and Bettina were going to hole their birdie putts at the first extra hole but they did. That s golf!” If Rawson&aposs maturity and self-evaluation are anything to go by, expect this Aussie to be breaking into the LET winner&aposs circle sooner rather than later. Sarah Kemp was the next-best Aussie at one-over in a tie for eighth place. Back-to-back title winner Nikki Garrett was a further stroke back at two-over the card. Australian results at the Deutsche Bank Ladies Swiss Open at Golf Gerre Losone, Switzerland Carlie Butler +5 (T32) Cherie Byrnes +8 (T53) Nikki Garrett +2 (T16) Leah Hart 77 73 (MC) Lisa Jean +10 (T62) Sarah Kemp +1 (T8) Karen Lunn +5 (T32) Joanne Mills 76 76 (MC) Anna Rawson -3 (T2) Rebecca Stevenson +5 (T32) Bree Turnbull 73 77 (MC) Shani Waugh +7 (T44)