Date: November 02, 2015
Author: Mark Hayes

Triple treat for Aussie fans

As the calendar flips to November, there could scarcely be a bigger buzz around Australian golf’s Triple Crown.

From all corners of the globe, not only are our own touring superstars poised to return home with a mix of our three most revered titles on their minds, but along with them come a host of international champions.

Adding more excitement to the potent mix is that organisers for each of the Australian Masters, Emirates Australian Open and Australian PGA Championship have attracted a fan favourite as their marquee overseas guest.

The party starts when the Masters returns to its spiritual home at Huntingdale with Sandbelt genius Ernie Els back in one of his happiest hunting grounds, Melbourne, where his feats are known and loved.

The same, although with less exposed evidence, applies to defending champion Jordan Spieth at The Australian Golf Club in Sydney where he will defend the Stonehaven Cup that set him on track to a year for the ages.

Spieth’s win, iced with a spectacular 63 on an unforgettable closing day, was the forerunner of his Masters, US Open and Tour Championship triumphs – all of which have earned the Texan a legion of fans.

And in Queensland, the sweet swing and tones of Nashville’s Brandt Snedeker are sure to be a hit at Royal Pines in the chase for the Kirkwood Cup.

Snedeker, the US PGA Tour’s rookie of the year in 2007, made a great impression on his first professional trip to Australia later that year and has carved out a super career since, winning seven times on his home tour, including the 2012 Tour Championship and FedEx Cup.

Golf Australia chief executive Stephen Pitt said to have such fan favourites duelling with our homegrown talent would make a feast for spectators.

“Ernie’s long been one of our most respected visitors and the way all fans warmed to Jordan at the Open in Sydney last year was spectacular,” Pitt said.

“And we’re really pleased to see Brandt coming back after he was injured last time he was due to visit. He’s a really likeable guy, too, just as the others.

“Part of the joy of coming to these events is your proximity to some of the world’s best players – and all three of these events are lucky to have classy visitors who’ll enhance that moment.”

And adding to the heady mix is the stellar form the Aussie brigade is bringing home and/or to the eastern seaboard.

Adam Scott, wielding the short putter with a variation of the claw grip that seemed to click into gear late in the recent Presidents Cup, closed at Malaysia’s CIMB Classic on Sunday with a sparkling 63 that almost pinched the PGA Tour co-sanctioned event.

More importantly, it revived clear images of his 2013/14 form that propelled the Queenslander to world No.1.

A long way south, another quality Aussie player who once had a broomstick putter made a big step in his own comeback.

Perth champion Brett Rumford, playing his state PGA championship east in Kalgoorlie, brushed aside a year of serious health concerns to show he will again be a force this summer.

The five-time European Tour winner was third in the Aussie Open last year and his consistent strokemaking will again be suited to The Australian Golf Club in particular.

Then there are our world-touring pros from tours around Asia, Europe and the Americas eager to make their mark and our elite amateurs desperate to test their wares against the world’s best.

It’s all lining up for a great few weeks – bring it on!