Dual Emirates Australian Open champion Greg Chalmers has committed to a third shot at the title.
Chalmers, 43, has made a career out of proving people wrong and, as ever, won’t enter the chase for the Stonehaven Cup among the favourites.
But the gritty West Australian will be sure to give his horde of fans a great run for their money at The Australian Gold Club from 23-26 November.
“There are only a couple of tournaments in the world that mean more to me than the Australian Open and it’s always special to come home and challenge again,” the Texas-based Chalmers said.
“I don’t think many had me down as a huge chance the couple of times I have managed to win, so who knows, maybe I can surprise a few more in Sydney again.”
Chalmers won his first national title at Royal Adelaide in 1998, beating the likes of Nick Faldo and Fred Couples.
Against the world’s best assembled for the Presidents Cup in 2011, he then outduelled Tiger Woods and reigning FedEx Cup champion Bill Haas and their American team colleagues at The Lakes for his second crown.
“Those are two of my greatest golfing memories – there are a lot of great names on the Stonehaven Cup and I’m pretty pumped to think mine’s on their twice,” Chalmers said.
“I haven’t given up hope of getting it there a third time, so I’m excited to come back to Sydney and try again in November.”
Remarkably, he has no fewer than 17 top-25 finishes in his Australian Open career, six of those in the top 10.
The affable left-hander had his long-awaited American top-tier breakthrough last year, aged 42 and in his 18th year and 386th start on the US PGA Tour.
But victory is no stranger to him at home, where he’s also pocketed trophies from the now defunct Australasian Players Championship and twice the prestigious Kirkwood Cup of the Australian PGA Championship, most recently in 2014 in a playoff over Wade Ormsby and Adam Scott.
Mark Hardess, Emirates Australian Open tournament director for promoter Lagardère Sports, said Chalmers’ return was a great sign of support from Australia’s touring pros based overseas.
“We’re clearly excited to have announced a couple of top-10 players recently in Jordan Spieth and Jason Day, but the tournament’s growing reputation is based on field depth, too,” Hardess said.
“Greg is a proven winner around the world over a long period and we know he has plenty of fans at home who’ll fancy his chances again.”
The Emirates Australian Open is a flagship tournament on the ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia. The winner will receive a minimum of 32 Official World Golf Ranking points.
The event will be telecast all four days on Channel 7. View TV guide.
Tickets are on sale now from Ticketek at www.ticketek.com or by calling 132 849.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AusOpenGolf and #AusOpenGolf
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