Date: November 20, 2018
Author: Mark Hayes

Tough calls a breeze for good mates

Marc Leishman and Cam Smith have got plenty of things going for them at this week’s ISPS Handa World Cup of Golf.

The Victorian and the Sandbelt-loving Queenslander are already vastly more familiar with their surrounds than their 27 rival teams at the pristine Metropolitan Golf Club in Melbourne.

They’re also in form, great mates and have the lowest combined world ranking of any team present this week.

But more, after a second practice round today, under the expert tutelage of Metropolitan member and new Australian Open low amateur David Micheluzzi, they already have the potentially problematic foursomes combinations well and truly figured.

With each playing a different brand of balls, it’s often a conundrum as to who will use which ball and when when that format is played on Friday and Sunday.

But that – and more – is a non-issue for the Aussie team which features the fade-fancying Leishman and draw-preferring Smith.

“I'll be teeing off the even holes, which (means) all the par-3s,” Leishman said.

“It was a pretty easy decision, to be honest. There's a few holes that go pretty sharp left to right, which are all even, and a few which go right to left, which are odd. They both set up pretty good (for us).

“Hopefully, we can take advantage of that and, yeah, have a good week.”

Leishman said on the par-fours, he would tee off using Smith’s Titleist balls to allow the Queenslander the best shot at approaches. He said he’d use his own Callaways on par-threes.

It might sound simple, but it’s a potential problem averted – and one that almost guaranteed will bring a few teams undone.

Leishman and Smith, good mates off the course, and their caddies, best friends in Florida, are all but certain to have a good time on course this week.

But Leishman, who’ll remarkably be watched by his sister, Kristy White, for the first time at a tournament, said nobody should mistake that jocular outlook for what’s going on internally.

“We (have) similar personalities off the golf course, but we're both very determined on it (and it’s) is a pretty good combination,” he said.

“We'll appear laid back, I think, out there. Hopefully things go our way and play well and do have a lot of fun.

“But don't be mistaken if we look like we're having too much fun, we're very determined and competitive people and I think that will do (us) well.”