23 Mar 2023 | Professional golf |

Aussies on Tour: 16 chasing direct entry to The Open

by Australian Golf Media

Wade Ormsby teeing off in Hong Kong.
Wade Ormsby teeing off in Hong Kong.

By Tony Webeck

Sixteen Australians have the opportunity to play their way straight into The Open Championship with a strong showing at this week’s Hong Kong City Championship in Hong Kong.

The R&A announced on Wednesday that the top four players not otherwise exempt at the Asian Tour event this week will receive spots in the field at Royal Liverpool where Cameron Smith will defend his title.

Just days after David Micheluzzi secured his place at Hoylake by clinching the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit, it is a terrific opportunity to further expand the Aussie influence at Royal Liverpool.

Currently second and third respectively on the Australasian Order of Merit, Andrew Martin and Tom Power Horan are in the field as is recent International Series Thailand champion Wade Ormsby and former Asian Tour winners Marcus Fraser, Scott Hend, Travis Smyth, Andrew Dodt, Terry Pilkadaris, Sam Brazel, Todd Sinnott and Zach Murray.

Ormsby, Hend and Brazel are all former UBS Hong Kong Open winners at Hong Kong Golf Club, providing two-time winner Ormsby an opportunity for a rare hat-trick.

“It’s great to back, it’s such a special place for me,” said the South Australian.

“Had last week off, as I was a reserve in Tucson for the LIV event, and won two weeks ago. So I am in a good place, I am playing well and can’t wait to get started.

“The golf course looks in great condition.”

When asked by Asian Tour Media as to the secret to playing Fanling’s Composite Course he had a simple answer: “Hit it straight around this place!

“I have successful experience here and the offer of The Open spot is great!”

The only player in the field already exempt for The Open is 2016 champion Henrik Stenson, meaning a top-five finish at minimum is needed to earn one of the four spots.There are major ramifications too for the Aussies in action at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play in Austin, Texas.

Jason Day (37th in world ranking) and 2013 champion Adam Scott (38th) are guaranteed a start at Augusta National, Min Woo Lee (47th) can ensure he plays The Masters for the second straight year by advancing past the group stage while Lucas Herbert (56th) and Cam Davis (79th) need to go deep to earn an invite to Augusta.

Elsewhere this week Grace Kim makes her debut as a member of the LPGA Tour at the LPGA Drive On Championship in Arizona, Cassie Porter plays her first Epson Tour event of the year at the IOA Championship in California and six Aussies tee it up at the inaugural The Galleri Classic on the PGA TOUR Champions.

Round 1 tee times AEDT

PGA TOUR World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play Austin Country Club, Austin, Texas Round 1 1.31am Min Woo Lee v Sahith Theegala 1.42am Cam Davis v Xander Schauffele 2.15am Lucas Herbert v Russell Henley 3.21am Ryan Fox (NZ) v Harris English 5.11am Adam Scott v Seamus Power 5.55am Jason Day v Adam Svensson

Defending champion: Scottie Scheffler Past Aussie winners: Geoff Ogilvy (2006, 2009), Jason Day (2014, 2016) TV times: Live 1.20am-11am Thursday, Friday, Saturday; Live 1am-9am Sunday; Live 1am-10am Monday on Fox Sports 503.

Corales Puntacana Championship Puntacana Resort & Club (Corales GCse), Punta Cana, Dominican Republic 10.57pm* Harrison Endycott, Wesley Bryan, Kramer Hickok 2.35am Cameron Percy, DA Points, Hank Lebioda 2.59am Greg Chalmers, Michael Kim, Henrik Norlander 2.59am* Aaron Baddeley, Geoff Ogilvy, Chesson Hadley

Defending champion: Chad Ramey Past Aussie winners: Nil TV times: Live 1.30am-4.30am Friday, Saturday; Live 5am-8am Sunday, Monday on Fox Sports 505.

LPGA Tour LPGA Drive On Championship Superstition Mountain G&CC, Gold Canyon, Arizona 1am       Sarah Kemp, Amanda Doherty, Dana Fall 1.33am* Stephanie KyriacouKaris Davidson, Yu Liu 3.01am Grace Kim, Minami Katsu, Ellinor Sudow 7.06am* Hannah Green, Gaby Lopez, Hinako Shibuno

Defending champion: Leona Maguire Past Aussie winners: Nil TV times: Live 9am-12pm Friday, Saturday on Fox Sports 505; Live 9am-12pm on Fox Sports 503; Live 9am-12pm Monday on Fox Sports 507.

Asian Tour World City Championship Hong Kong Golf Club, Hong Kong 9.50am Harrison Gilbert, Steven Lam, Wu Sho-wai 10am*   Brett Coletta, Bai Zhengkai, Isaac Lam (a) 10.10am* Michael Hendry (NZ), Marcus Fraser, Michael Maguire 10.20am* Sam BrazelBen Campbell (NZ), James Gill 10.30am* John Lyras, Ratchanon Chantananuwat, Micah Lauren Shin 10.40am  Andrew Martin, Karandeep Kochhar, Rattanon Wannasrichan 10.50am Tom Power Horan, Settee Prakongvech, Panuphol Pittayarat 10.50am* Scott Hend, Ian Poulter, Sadom Kaewkanjana 11am     Terry Pilkadaris, Veer Ahlawat, Yoseop Seo 11am*   Wade Ormsby, Henrik Stenson, Li Haotong 11.10am* Jack Thompson, Chapchai Nirat, Suteepat Prateeptienchai 2.40pm* Deyen Lawson, Chanat Sakulpolphaisan, Jinho Choi 3pm       Zach Murray, Berry Henson, Jeunghun Wang 3pm*     Andrew Dodt, Jeev Milkha Singh, David Drysdale 3.30pm Travis Smyth, Jazz Janewattananond, Miguel Tabuena 3.50pm* Todd Sinnott, Taehee Lee, Atiruj Winaicharoenchai

Defending champion: Inaugural event Past Aussie winners: Nil TV times: Live 4.30pm-8.30pm Thursday, Friday; Live 3pm-7pm Saturday; Live 4pm-7pm Sunday on Fox Sports 503.

Korn Ferry Tour Club Car Championship The Landings Golf & Athletic Club (Deer Creek), Savannah, Georgia 3.40am* Brett Drewitt, Seth Reeves, Mark Anderson 4.22am Curtis Luck, José de Jesús Rodríguez, Tain Lee

Defending champion: TJ Vogel Past Aussie winners: Nil

Epson Tour IOA Championship Morongo Golf Club at Tukwet Canyon, Beaumont, California Australasians in the field: Gabi Ruffels, Robyn Choi, Amelia Garvey (NZ), Sarah Jane Smith, Hira Naveed, Cassie Porter

Defending champion: Linnea Strom Past Aussie winners: Nil

PGA TOUR Champions The Galleri Classic Mission Hills Country Club, Rancho Mirage, California Australasians in the field: Steven Alker (NZ), Robert Allenby, Stuart Appleby, Richard Green, David McKenzie, Rod Pampling, John Senden

Defending champion: Inaugural event Past Aussie winners: Nil TV times: 2pm-3pm Saturday on Fox Sports 503; Live 8am-10am Sunday, Monday on Fox Sports 505.

PGA TOUR Latinoamerica Roberto de Vicenzo Memorial 100 Years Ranelagh Golf Club, Buenos Aires, Argentina 3.30am* Harry Hillier (NZ), Peyton Wilhoit, Austin Squires 2.40am Charlie Hillier (NZ), Evan Knight, Josh Goldenberg

Defending champion: Inaugural event Past Aussie winners: Nil

Challenge Tour Duncan Taylor Black Bull Challenge Karnataka Golf Association, Bangalore, India 2.20pm Maverick Antcliff, Jack Singh Barr, Tom Vaillant

Defending champion: Inaugural event Past Aussie winners: Nil

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