Date: November 27, 2013
Author: Martin Blake at Royal Sydney

Emirates Australian Open: Guide

THE COURSE Royal Sydney is a parkland course that was originally a links, but has morphed over the years. It has characteristics of the Melbourne sandbelt courses and is ranked among the best in Australia. The club has hosted 13 previous Australian Opens, most recently in 2008 when Tim Clarke from South Africa won. It is a par 72 layout with undulating greens and can be quite tight and tricky. THE TRIPLE CROWN Refers to the three traditional Australian tournaments — the PGA, the Masters and the Open. When Robert Allenby won all three in the one year, 2005, it was referred to as the triple crown, and Adam Scott has the opportunity to take it this year. Greg Chalmers had a similar chance in 2011 but he could not win the third leg, the PGA Championship. Scott has already won the PGA and the Masters this year. THE OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP LURE The top three finishers in the Emirates Australian Open who are not already exempt will be granted a place in the field for the British Open Championship at Royal Liverpool next year. Those already exempt are Adam Scott, Jason Day, Rory McIlroy and Kevin Streelman. This is the first year of a new qualifying system for the Open. RECENT AUSTRALIAN OPEN WINNERS 2012 Peter Senior (Qld) The Lakes 2011 Greg Chalmers (WA) The Lakes 2010 Geoff Ogilvy (Vic) The Lakes 2009 Adam Scott (Qld) New South Wales 2008 Tim Clarke (Sth Africa) Royal Sydney 2007 Craig Parry (NSW) The Australian 2006 John Senden (Qld) Royal Sydney 2005 Robert Allenby (Vic) Moonah Links 2004 Peter Lonard (NSW) The Australian 2003 Peter Lonard (NSW) Moonah Links MAIN CHANCES Adam Scott is the world No. 2 and has a chance to win the triple crown of the big Australian tournaments. Jason Day is the world No. 11 and triumphed in the World Cup just last weekend. Rory McIlroy has not won in 2013 but is too good a player not to come back hard at some point. Greg Chalmers is twice a national champion though he is not given the plaudits he has earned. THE SLEEPERS Veteran Peter Senior, 54, is the defending champion and remains a force on the seniors tour. On a tight course like Royal Sydney, he is not out of the running here. John Senden won at Royal Sydney in 2006 and after an injury-troubled year, is finding his form again. Marcus Fraser continues to play excellent golf in Europe without much fanfare, and would love to win his home Open. WHO TO WATCH Adam Scott and Jason Day will play together on Thursday (from 7.10am) and Friday in the marquee grouping. World No. 9 Rory McIlroy plays Thursday afternoon from 12.10, with Geoff Ogilvy, the 2006 US Open champion. The field has some outstanding young players who are the next wave, including Ryan Ruffels (Victoria, 12.30 hit-off) and Nathan Holman (Vic, 6.50am hit-off) and Brady Watt (WA, 7.40 hit-off). TRANSPORT/PARKING Parking is $12 at Woolahra Golf Club. Shuttles from Bondi Junction station. TICKETS Through Ticketek or at the gate. $34 single day, $60 weekend, $105 season pass. TELEVISION Channel Seven