Date: April 26, 2012

Grant Report – Victorian Golf Pros Recognised

The cream of Victoria’s golfers including major winners Peter Thomson and Geoff Ogilvy, have been honoured at Royal Melbourne Golf Club as part of the PGA of Australia’s Centenary awards program.

A total of 28 professionals won awards as recognition for their contribution to Australian golf across a number of areas including playing and coaching.

Those honoured by the Victorian division of the PGA were: Robert Allenby, Stuart Appleby, Steve Bann, Michael Clayton, John Davis, Ian Denny, Bruce Devlin, Trevor Flakemore, Stewart Ginn, David Graham, Bruce Green, Jack Harris, Michael Harwood, Graham Kelly, Peter Knight, Harold Knights, Kel Llewellyn, Dale Lynch, Howard McHutchison, Paul Moloney, Tim Moore, Geoff Ogilvy, Bob Shearer, Brian Simpson, Ian Stanley, Peter Thomson, Brian Twite and Russell Wilson.

PGA Centenary PatronGreg Norman, although unable to attend the function, sent a message to all the award recipients acknowledging their place within Australian golf history.

“You are all among some of the most highly skilled PGA members the world over and I hope will take great pride in being part of such an historic occasion,” Norman said.

PGA Chief Executive Officer Brian Thorburn said: “PGA Members Australia wide have been the cornerstone of the Australian golf industry for the last 100 years and I congratulate all award winners on their part in this illustrious history.”

The PGA was formed on September 19 1911 by 15 professional golfers looking to advance their profession.

Today, the organisation consists of over 2500 members who are all among some of the most highly trained golf coaches and players the world over.

Meanwhile, Victorian Luke Bleumink and Queenslander Scott Hend were singled out for their recent tour wins.

Bleumink claimed his first professional victory at the Johor Masters on the Asian Development Tour.

Heading into the fourth and final round as joint leader Bleumink held his nerve to a two shot victory with a seven-under-par 281.

“Obviously, I’m happy to win my first professional title," Bleumink said. "It was a pretty solid week for me but I didn’t drive the ball as well as I would like to. My putting pulled my game up and I’m glad I hung in there for the win.

“This win sets me up nicely for the year ahead. It also shows that I can play well under pressure and the experience will be important for the rest of the season.”

Bleumink turned professional in 2010 playing mostly on the PGA Tour of Australasia where his best performance came in his rookie year when he finished in a share for 12th at the Victorian PGA Championship.

Hend won after bad weather reduced the Asian Tour’s Singapore Classic to 54 holes, The 38-year-old took out his seventh career title.

“It’s amazing especially to have four weeks off and come back and win," Hend said. "It’s great to see some of the hard work and practice that I’ve put in paying off.”

Hend started the final round two shots behind the leader in a tie for fifth with fellow Australian and Asian Tour winner Kieran Pratt of Victoria.

With a blistering final round six-under-par 64 to take him to a tournament total of 11-under the card Hend had a nervous wait as clubhouse leader with four players eventually finishing one shot behind him.

“It’s sort of like you’re going out and have to wait for your wife to do her hair or something. You’re just sitting around and pacing around and that was what I was feeling then.

“I just wanted it to be over and know whether I’ve won or not. Luckily for me, I won,” added Hend.

Hend has been a dominant force on the Asian Tour since he joined in 2007 where he finished fourth on the Order of Merit, matching this again in 2009. His win this week is his second on the Asian Tour adding to his Indonesia President Invitational victory in 2008.

Hend and Bleumink join Kieran Pratt and Nick Cullen as Australian winners in Asia for 2012.