The 93rd Australian Open is set to make a triumphant return to Royal Sydney Golf Club in 2008 from 11 through 14 December. As it did in 2007, the national championship will provide the climax to the Australasian Summer of Golf calendar, and will again see some of the world s leading players including Defending Champion Craig Parry and current world number 5 and 2008 World Golf Championships CA Championship winner Geoff Ogilvy, compete for the chance to lift the prized Stonehaven Cup. The Open was last held at this prestigious club in 2006, producing one of the most memorable finishes in recent history with Senden and Ogilvy and a host of Aussie greats battling right down to the end. Tony Hallam, CEO Golf Australia said, “Golf Australia is delighted to bring the Australian Open back to one of the most highly regarded and picture perfect clubs in Australia. “This is also the second year of our three-year partnership with the NSW Government; a partnership that showcases our national championship amongst Sydney&aposs world-class golf courses. “It is a privilege to return in 2008, and we thank the club for their support,” Hallam stated. Craig Parry, Defending Champion said, “I was thrilled to hear that the Australian Open would be back at Royal Sydney in 2008. In the locker room, this magnificent venue is widely acknowledged as one of the best in the country. I look forward to returning in December to defend my title against some of the best in the world.” Geoff Ogilvy said, “After the four golf majors, winning the Australian Open is the most important championship in golf for me as an Australian player. I almost achieved this goal in 2006 and I am already looking forward to returning to Royal Sydney in search of a win.” Identified as a “Hallmark Event” by the NSW Government in 2007 and where it will remain until at least 2009, the Australian Open is further building its great significance in the Asia Pacific region. NSW Premier Morris Iemma said the Australian Open is synonymous with Sydney and recognised as one of Australia s flagship annual sporting events. Mr Iemma said, “The Open is our national golfing title with a tradition and history unrivalled in Australian golf. “The 2006 and 2007 Australian Opens each attracted over 40,000 spectators over four days to witness world class golf, highlighted by John Senden&aposs dramatic birdie-birdie finish to claim the 2006 championship by one stroke and Craig Parry&aposs first Stonehaven Cup success last year. “I look forward to this year&aposs Open being equally exciting for fans as well as promoting Sydney, Australia s global city, through national and international television coverage. “Sydney will again host the Open in 2009, fitting perfectly into our commitment to continue to secure major international events.” The 2008 Australian Open will be an exciting finale to the men&aposs calendar on the Australasian Summer of Golf. For more information, visit www.golfaustralia.org.au or www.australianopengolf.com.