Date: December 09, 2007

Ogilvy’s Open mission

By Brendan James Geoff Ogilvy is arguably one of professional golf&aposs most well read players. The 2006 US Open champion has turned the page on many a book from spy thrillers to the history of the game he plays so well. It is probably for this reason that his knowledge of the game is so vast. He would certainly have no trouble reciting the names of at least 30 past winners of the Australian Open. The trouble is the one name he won t get to read is Geoff Ogilvy. That is, for now. It is the history of the Open, its impressive list of victors and the fact he dearly wants to be one of those names on the Stonehaven Cup that Ogilvy says will inspire him to do well in the championship. “Every golfer wants to win the four majors and I&aposm the same,” he said. “But the next one on the list is the Australian Open. I&aposm pretty sure that&aposs the one every Australian player really wants to win. “There&aposs a lot more tournaments around the world that will do more for your career, but there&aposs something special about your own national open. “We all want this to be one of the biggest championships in the world. It&aposs our tournament. It is the next tournament I want to win after the majors … so this is the No.1 tournament in the world I want to win that isn&apost a major so I will be coming back as long as I can to try and win it. Perhaps I&aposll get it this year. “The Open has such a rich history with so many great players winning it. When I won the US Open I was in awe of the great names on the trophy from Bobby Jones, to Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player and Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson and Tiger Woods. And there, at the end of the list, was my name. “Some of these players have their names on the Australian Open trophy as well along with other greats like Greg Norman, Peter Thomson and Norman von Nida. I would love to get my name on that trophy too.” Holding the MFS Australian Open in such high esteem might be seen to add pressure to Ogilvy s shoulders, but the Victorian knows how to perform in big events these days. He also knows he can beat everyone in the field on any given week. “I stand on the 1st tee at a major championship or big event now thinking I can win it, which wasn&apost the case before,” Ogilvy said. “You&aposve got a leg up on a lot of guys at each championship, I assume, because I used to be one of those guys who wondered if they had the ability to do it. I&aposm definitely not as nervous or afraid to play well in the big ones as I used to be and that is a good thing going forward.” Perhaps the most intense pressure Ogilvy feels these days is when he tees it up in events on the Australasian Tour as he is yet to record a win on home soil. “It is not something I sit down at night and think why haven&apost I won in Australia yet? But it would be nice to win one,” Ogilvy said. “These are special tournaments for us and you would like to win a few of them before you are done. “I have got a long time until I am done so it would be nice to win here for sure.” If Ogilvy, 31, happens to win this year&aposs MFS Australian Open at The Australian he will become the first man since Tom Watson in 1984 to complete a career Australian-US Open double. In fact, he will join an elite club of just six players (some might say legends) who have achieved the feat in the century-plus history of both championships. Ogilvy would quite rightly take his place alongside Nicklaus, Player, Palmer, Watson, David Graham and Gene Sarazen.