Australian Open. Super Spieth Wins.

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Super Jordan Spieth wins the Australian Open at The Australian Golf Club in Sydney.

Australian Open

Jordan Spieth / Getty Images

Jordan had a bogey free final round of -8 under par 63, to blow away all competition in the Emirates Australian Open, with a total of -13 under par. a six shot margin of victory. He said it was probably the best round of golf he had ever played;

“That was definitely the best round I’ve ever played.”

“At the start I didn’t think such a round was out there, but the putts kept going in. It was an awesome experience.”

“I’m for sure going to be coming back to Australia.”

Jordan will join some of golf’s all-time greats including Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Arnold Palmer and Greg Norman to have his name etched on the Stonehaven Cup.

In second place, at -7 under par was veteran Rod Pampling, he carded a last round -3 under par 68.

Another Aussie Brett Rumford claimed third position at -6 under par for the tournament, his final effort of -1 under par 70 just not good enough.

World number three Adam Scott shot a final round of even par 71 and finished fifth place, and full nine strokes behind the leader.

There was no magical recovery from defending champion, and World number one  Rory McIlroy, he finished way down the field at T 15, at +1 over par. He was also non-committal about returning next year;

“It’s been tough all weekend, I was trying to get something going, but with the pin positions and the wind, it was just very hard to get the ball close to the hole. It just wasn’t meant to be this year.”

“Depends all on the schedule and where it’s going, but I love playing in Australia. I had a wonderful time this year, so hopefully it works again.”

The gusting northeasterly breezes wreaked havoc on scores all week, and only eight players managed to finished the tournament with under par totals.

Australian Open. Three way tie at the top. Rory Wrecks it.

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There is a three way tie at the top of the Australian Open, as Rory McIlroy wrecks his round.

Brett Rumford, Jordan Spieth and Greg Chalmers share the lead after the third round of the Australian Open, at -5 under par, on the tough Australian Golf Club Sydney course.

Tied is second place at -4 under par are local duo Adam Scott and Rod Pampling. who both carded third rounds of -2 under par 69.

Adam spoke about the tough conditions;

“It really came up around the turn and blew hard on the back nine.”

“It’s really tough with the way it’s blowing; you are trying to stay as stable as you can. It’s certainly presented a pretty tough challenge this week.”

Rory McIlroy had a train-wreck of a third round, carding a triple-bogey on the ninth hole and a double-bogey on 10, he finished with a  +5 over par  76, and six strokes from the lead, tied for 14th place. There is really no hope hope of a miraculous come back for Rory, this season is probably one tournament to many in what has been a great year for him.

Australian Open

The beginning of the end for Rory / Getty Images

Rory has almost conceded defeat;

“It was a tough day obviously, the wind was up. I was doing okay, steady enough, until I got to the ninth.”

“I hit a wayward tee-shot into what I thought was a decent enough lie that I could advance the ball. But I didn’t realise what I was standing on is not like dirt or earth. It was more like carpet.”

“So the ball went underneath the carpet. Had it been a normal surface it would have been alright, but down there it was impossible.”

Australian Open

Where is it ? / Getty Images

“So that added up to a seven. Then I did what I did last week in Dubai (when he double-bogied two holes in succession during the third round of the DP World Tour Championship) and compounded that error with another just about as bad. I got a huge flier with a wedge.”

“The ball pitched at 160-yards into the wind which is ridiculous. Over the last few holes I was just trying to hang on really.”

“I need a fast start tomorrow to have a chance, it depends too on what the guys ahead of me do. I need some help.”

“But the greens have been firmer every day. So a low score is higher than it was. I still feel like I can shoot a good one. I just don’t know if that will be enough.”

“I’ll be trying my best. It’s the last round of the season so it would be nice to make it a good one.

On a tough Australian Golf Club course and its swirling, unpredictable winds, only eight players managed the third round with under par scores.

Australian Open. Lefty Greg Leads

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Lefty Greg Chalmers leads the Emirates Australian Open at the half-way stage at the Australian Golf Club Sydney.

 

Greg shot a second round -5 under par 66 to lead the Australian Open with that score by one shot.

Rory McIlroy shares second place, at -4 under par, with three other players they are; Adam Crawford, amateur Todd Sinnott and Conrad Schindler.

Rory thinks he missed a good chance today to get away from the field;

“I felt like I had an opportunity today to maybe shoot a good one and put a little bit of space between myself and the rest of the field, but it didn’t really pan out that way.”

Jordan Spieth, Brett Rumford and Geoff Drakeford are tied in sixth spot at -3 under par.

Jordan did not have a good day, but stayed in touch with the leaders;

“It was a struggle, big-time struggle, I wasn’t hitting it well. If I wasn’t putting well I may have shot 45 on the back nine.”

“I just didn’t find the ball-striking until the last few holes and then was very fortunate to grab a few birdies. I was really looking at making 4s and getting in and regrouping for tomorrow. But instead I kept myself in the tournament.”

Adam Scott is tied in ninth position at -2 under par following his second round -5 under par 66, he was happier with his effort today;

Australian Open

Adam Scott / Getty Images

“Yesterday I got off to a bad start, and I didn’t scramble well when I had to and it started to get away from me.”

”Today a couple of good shots coming up 14 and I made an eagle and momentum is on your side.”

“I think the greens were certainly testing us, getting to understand the slopes on the greens and especially around the edges,”

“I’ve hit a lot of wedge shots that have been a little mis-struck and then spinning off the greens. I guess that’s got to do with the pin positions as well. So getting it very close to the hole is not that easy. I think the greens have to be the defense because there is no rough.”

 

Emirates Australian Open, Advantage to Broomsticks in the Wind.

Peter Senior

 

Peter Senior / The Daily Telegraph

Veteran Aussie, 53 year-old Peter Senior won the Emirates Australian Open, leaning on his broomstick in the gale force winds. Peter achieved his win shooting par in the last round to win by one shot at -4 under par. In second place was Brendan Jones at -3 under par, also another of the Broomstick brigade. If you have ever had any doubts about the advantage gained from using a Broomstick, this tournament was a glaring example of the advantage in windy conditions. It was plain to see that both players were standing steady on the greens over their putts, anchored to the ground before stroking the ball.  Peter said after his round;

” These are the conditions I thrive in,  if the conditions were good, the really good players would have shone this week,”

Peter becomes Australia’s oldest winner of the Stonehaven Cup, surpassing the great Peter Thomson, who won as a 43-year-old in 1973.

Cameron Percy was in third place at -2 under par with world number four Justin Rose finishing tied in fourth place with Kieran Pratt and Kim Felton. Justin Rose struggled with the putter in the terrible conditions, so bad were the winds that play had to be suspended for over three hours. The howling wind blew over a television tower and a marquee got crushed during the mayhem, which finished in near darkness, Justin Rose summed it up;

” It was like a day-night match,  I’ve never played a hole with shadows from a spotlight.”

 

Emirates Australian Open, John Senden Regains Lead

Emirates Australian Open

John Senden

John Senden / emiratesaustralianopen.com.au

John Senden regained the lead of the Emirates Australian Open at The Lakes, Sydney, with a battling third round of  -2 under par, 70 and a tournament total of -7 under par.  John takes a handy two-shot lead over Justin Rose of England into tomorrow’s final round, the second year in succession that he has led the national championship through 54 holes, but last year at The Lakes he was reeled in by Greg Chalmers. That statistic is something that John is acutely aware of, he mentioned it in his report, along with his Eagle at the par 5 eleventh;

“I know where I stand,’ I have to deal with that and go out tomorrow and play my game. You have to be able to control the ball any time you play golf, but in these conditions you have to be really on your game. I had a good number I was planning on just hit through the shot. If it goes a little long, that’s okay’. I took a risk there and pulled it off.’’

John is also mindful of the speed of the greens. and hopes the tournament organisers are also thinking about the course set up, the putting surfaces were running at 11 on the stimpmeter at the start of today’s round, but were much quicker by the end.

“If they’re predicting windier conditions tomorrow, they’ve got to make sure they take care of that,’

World number four Justin Rose  is in second place alone at -5 under par, he was superb with his control, not making a single bogey until the 17th hole, and had possession of the lead for some time. But then the Englishman chipped off the green and dropped a shot, then missed the 18th green to the right and could not make par there either, Justin finished with signing for a -2 under par, 70, and will start two shots adrift of John Senden, but will be playing along side of him in the final pairing tomorrow. Justin said the conditions got tougher as the day went along;

“It got progressively tougher as the day went on, by the end of the round it was tough to even tap in, to be perfectly honest with you. Even from three feet you were getting buffeted around, the wind’s moving you. It’s very difficult to get the ball in the hole. Whoever literally stands up, the last man standing will win the golf tournament. I think it’s going to be a battle.’’

There are three Aussies tied in third spot at -4 under par for the tournament, Matthew Jones, Kieran Pratt and veteran Peter Senior.  2009 Australian Open champion Adam Scott is not quite  out of the running just yet.Adam is at two-under-par for the tournament, just five shots back of the lead, especially if he gets the type of generous early morning conditions that most of the players have experienced this week.

Marcus Fraser had a disastrous third round of +4 over par 76, and he also will need something special on Sunday if he wants to get up and contend this trophy.

 

Emirates Australian Open, Marcus Fraser Leads with a Hole in One

Marcus Fraser

Marcus Fraser / Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Aussie Marcus Fraser leads the Emirates Australian Open at the conclusion of the second round at The Lakes golf course in Sydney, with another -3 under par, 69 round, and a tournament total of -6 under par. Marcus, who played in the mornings calm conditions has a one shot advantage over John Senden and Brendan Jones. Marcus aced the par 3 fifteenth hole to cap off a remarkable seven weeks playing golf in seven different countries. Next week he will travel to Malaysia to see if he can win the Asian Tour money title. Marcus spoke of his ace, and his grueling schedule;

” To have one go in like that, it turned the round and the tournament around from where I was. I’ve been playing so much I feel like I’m going with the flow a little bit, playing week-in, week-out you’re going through the same routine every day and it feels like another golf tournament. At the same time it is the Aussie Open. Definitely it’s the pick of the bunch of the eight weeks for me.”

Take a look at the late season schedule of Marcus, starting  September in Malaysia, then China WGC-HSBC Champions, the Barclays Singapore Open, the UBS Hong Kong Open, the European Tour’s DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, then a failed attempt to secure a 2013 PGA Tour card in California last week, and back to Malaysia next week.

John Senden played in the windy afternoon conditions and could only manage a +1 over par round, falling back to -5 under par for the tournament and tied in second place with Brendan Jones, who carded a -1 under par second round, for his -5 under par total.

On his own in fourth place is another Aussie, Nick Cullen, he had a second round of  -2 under par and a total of -4 under for the tournament.

World number four, Justin Rose started well, with four birdies on the front nine to move into the lead at -7 under par, but unusually fell behind with four bogeys in six holes in the windy afternoon conditions, leaving him with a +1 over par 73, tied in fifth position at -3 under par. Adam Scott managed a -1 under par second round and is five shots off the pace.

Story of the day was made by 63 year-old Tom Watson, who fired in a second round -4 under par 68, to make the cut by one shot after his terrible start to the tournament sinking to a first round total of 78. Tom expressed his desire to succeed;

” I hate missing cuts, I really do, that means you’ve failed.”

Tom”s playing partner, Greg Chalmers also just made the cut by one shot, and was not happy with his performance in the easier morning conditions;

” Three par fives on the back nine and I bogeyed two of them. That’s not going to work if you want to have a good score out here. I guess I’m going to get to play on the weekend so I get to go out and shoot a low score, but certainly I’m probably going to start a long way back.”

It certainly looks like the winner of this tournament will be the player who can master the windier afternoon conditions for the next two days.

 

 

Emirates Australian Open, John Senden Sizzles in 1st Round

 

 

Emirates Australian Open

 

 

Senden Caddie

John Senden / australianpga

John Senden certainly sizzled in the opening round of the Emirates Australian Open at The Lakes golf course in Sydney, shooting a -6 under par 66, to lead by one shot. John has had another consistent year on the  US PGA Tour, earning five top ten finishes, and he capitalised here as he took advantage of the light winds earlier in the day. The afternoon players had to contend with a stiff breeze, which made the going a little bit more difficult. The 41 year-old John reckons he is playing some of the best golf of his life;

” I’ve been playing some of the best golf I’ve played in my life,’ I just need to believe in that and keep going forward. I’ve played with them all. I know how they are. It’s about standing on the stage and being comfortable. That’s where it’s at. I feel like I’m getting better at that. I’m moving forward, slowly getting better, that’s where my whole career’s been going. I need to continue in that direction and keep everything simple and just play.”

John has also been caddying for his son Jacob at Keparra Golf Club in Brisbane, his own Alma Mater, he spoke about Jacob;

” He’s starting to get to know the game of golf a bit. He’s always been able to hit the ball well but now’s the time I can get him on the golf course and learn a bit about walking six, seven, eight holes, learning a bit about etiquette. He’s starting to get the gist of it. He’s into every sport. He loves it. When I first took him out I took him in a golf kart and all he wanted to do was drive the golf kart. Now we’re walking, it’s fun being out there with him and hopefully he’ll continue to play the game and enjoy it.”

Five players are just one shot back of the leader, three Aussies, one Kiwi and one Englishman, in the shape of World number four, and one of the favorites here, Justin Rose.  Justin mentioned the early start time today;

” You assume the early morning round is the one you have to post a good number, all in all, it’s a good start.”

The three Aussies who also shot 68 and are at -4 under par are, Kim Felton, Richard Green and Brendan Jones. Joining that bunch is Kiwi Gareth Padison.

Adam Scott, one of the more fancied players to lift this trophy posted an even par round of 72, leaving him six shots off the pace at the top of the leaderboard. Adam admitted to being a little bit off;

It was good conditions this morning but I tried to play quite aggressively my first nine and hit a few ordinary shots, nothing too bad but got in a bit of trouble and wasted opportunities out there. So I was a little bit off but I played fairly good the front nine in pretty tricky conditions with the wind getting up. That’s the tougher nine so not too much damage done but I’m certainly giving them a head start this week. I would have loved to have been a few shots better but there’s another 54 holes, that’s a lot of golf to play so a course like this. If you can have a good nine holes you’re right back in it.”

Adam is probably right, we will see how the broomstick performs on the greens tomorrow, after Adam had been practicing here with a conventional putter, before the tournament began.