Date: November 30, 2015
Author: Robert Grant

Bowditch a future star: Baker-Finch

Steven Bowditch may have made an inauspicious start to the Australian summer but one former star is convinced the burly pro from Newcastle can look forward to multiple wins in the future.

Battle-weary Bowditch missed the cut at both the Australian Masters and the Australian Open as he struggled to maintain the form which has made him a serious contender on the US PGA Tour this year.

But former British Open winner Ian Baker-Finch, says Bowditch will become a major force on the international circuit.

While he has had a disappointing home-coming, Bowditch had his best season ever in 2015.

He won the AT&T Byron Nelson in Texas, where he is based, on the same course where he married his wife Amanda in 2011.

Last year he also excelled there, claiming the Texas Open.

Baker-Finch credits a settled home and personal life with Bowditch's rise on the tour.

"I really think he turned it (his game) around when he got married," Baker-Finch said.

"He is so much more comfortable and more stable in his own skin.

"Since that time, he's won a couple of times on the PGA Tour.

"He's in a good place."

His results this year propelled him to selection in the International team in the recent Presidents Cup in South Korea.

And in the US he produced a string of top-25 events and prize money of more than $3 million, allowing him to finish 20th on the tour's FedExCup standings.

The 32-year-old has the strength to power his way to success, according to Baker-Finch.

“He's still strong… it's really good for the game these days to be able to hit the ball a long way," Baker-Finch said.

"And when you win, it breeds confidence and winning this year and getting into the Presidents Cup was great for his confidence.

"I see him continuing to be in that top-50 in the world, vying for spots on the Presidents Cup team and maybe contending in the majors."

Baker-Finch, the 1991 British Open champion, is captain of the Australian team for next year's Olympics in Brazil.