16 Mar 2023 | Professional golf |

Aussies on Tour: Captain Whitney to lead the way in Singapore

by Australian Golf Media

Whitney Hillier.

By Tony Webeck

West Australian Whitney Hillier has a team title to defend and an individual aspiration to fulfil when the Aramco Team Series Singapore tees off at Laguna National Golf Resort Club on Thursday.

Hillier was victorious in the team event in her mother’s homeland in Thailand last May and finished third in the individual event.

She is one of 26 captains in Singapore this week who have drafted fellow professionals into their team and will be assigned an amateur player for the 36-hole team competition.

A 54-hole individual competition will run in conjunction where Hillier will push for her maiden win on the Ladies European Tour.

Making her 159th start on the LET, the 32-year-old has 15 career top-10 finishes and is coming off her best season to date.

She finished 14th on the moneylist in 2022, her best finish a runner-up result at the Jabra Ladies Open.

In her pursuit of a second team win this week Hillier drafted LET winner Jana Melichova into her team, Wales’ Lydia Hall – a frequent visitor to Australia – rounding out the professional trio.

New Zealand’s world No.1 Lydia Ko had the last pick of the evening and chose LET rookie Aline Krauter from Germany and they will be joined by Sweden’s Lisa Pettersson.

US star Danielle Kang opted for Switzerland’s Kim Metraux and Spain’s Carmen Alonso made up the trio, while 2022 Race to Costa del Sol champion Linn Grant stuck with Sweden and chose Elin Arvidsson with American Kelly Whaley completing the team.

Another regular visitor Down Under, England’s Felicity Johnson, went with an Australasian theme with her team, drafting Perth’s Kirsten Rudgeley along with Kiwi pocket rocket Momoka Kobori.

As Hillier chases a maiden win, South Australian Wade Ormsby is seeking to go back-to-back at the Asian Tour’s The DGC Open in India.

A playoff triumph at the International Series Thailand has elevated Ormsby to second on both the Asian Tour and International Series Order of Merits.

The 42-year-old has recently begun working with coach Grant Field and believes he has helped to unlock some missing pieces of the puzzle.

“We all analyse our games all the time and I feel my new coach has given me a lot of the answers to why I’ve struggled in certain areas,” Ormsby said of the reigning PGA of Australia High Performance National Coach of the Year.

“I’ve had great coaches all the way through my career but sometimes the penny drops and that’s been the case with Grant.

“My No.1 priority is to get my game back to where I can get into tournaments and start to contend for wins.”

Ormsby is one of six Aussies and three Kiwis who will take to Delhi Golf Club from Thursday, 2016 Olympians Marcus Fraser and Scott Hend the first to tee off at 12.50pm and 1pm respectively AEDT.

Cameron Percy and Harrison Endycott are the only two Aussies in the field for the PGA TOUR’s Valspar Championship, there are seven Australians teeing it up at the Hoag Classic on the PGA TOUR Champions and the Cameron Smith-led Ripper GC are in action at LIV Golf Tucson.

Round 1 tee times AEDT


Valspar Championship

Innisbrook Resort (Copperhead Cse), Palm Harbor, Florida

11.51pm* Cameron Percy, Patton Kizzire, Ryan Moore

5.25am Harrison Endycott, Brandon Matthews, Ludvig Aberg (a)

Defending champion: Sam Burns

Past Aussie winners: John Senden (2014)

TV times: Live 1am-9am Friday, Saturday; Live 4am-9am Sunday, Monday on Fox Sports 503.

Asian Tour

The DGC Open

Delhi Golf Club, India

12.50pm* Marcus Fraser, Prayad Marksaeng, Jyoti Randhawa

1pm* Scott Hend, Ian Snyman, Karandeep Kochhar

1.20pm Ben Campbell (NZ), Tirawat Kaewsiribandit, Kyongjun Moon

1.40pm* Kevin Yuan, Chapchai Nirat, Miguel Tabuena

2pm Jack Thompson, Shamim Khan, Ye Wocheng

2.10pm Doug Klein, Amandeep Singh Johl, Aadil Bedi

2.10pm* Nick Voke (NZ), Chanat Sakulpolphaisan, Harshjeet Singh Sethie

5.40pm* Denzel Ieremia (NZ), Aman Raj, Panuphol Pittayarat

6pm* Terry Pilkadaris, Itthipat Buranatanyarat, Nick Paez

Defending champion: Nitithorn Thippong

Past Aussie winners: Nil

Ladies European Tour

Aramco Team Series Singapore

Laguna National Golf Resort Club, Singapore

12.28pm* Whitney Hillier, Jana Melichova, Lydia Hall

1.16pm* Kirsten Rudgeley, Momoka Kobori (NZ), Felicity Johnson

2.09pm Lydia Ko (NZ), Aline Krauter, Lisa Pettersson

Defending champion: Inaugural event

Past Aussie winners: Nil

TV times: Live 4pm-8pm Thursday, Friday on Fox Sports 503; Live 4pm-8pm Saturday on Fox Sports 506.

PGA TOUR Champions

Hoag Classic

Newport Beach CC, Newport Beach, California

Aussies in the field: Robert Allenby, Stuart Appleby, Richard Green, Mark Hensby, David McKenzie, Rod Pampling, John Senden

Defending champion: Retief Goosen

Past Aussie winners: Rodger Davis (2003)

TV times: Live 9am-11am Saturday on Fox Sports 503; Live 7am-10am Sunday, Monday on Fox Sports 505.

PGA TOUR Latinoamerica

Termas de Rio Hondo Invitational

Rio Hondo Golf Club, Rio Hondo, Argentina

10.50pm Charlie Hillier (NZ), Jake Hendrix, Logan Bryant

2.40am Harry Hillier (NZ), Diego Cordova, Daniel Hudson

Defending champion: Kevin Velo

Past Aussie winners: Nil

LIV Golf

LIV Golf Tucson

The Gallery Golf Club, Marana, Arizona

Australasians in the field: Matt Jones, Danny Lee (NZ), Marc Leishman, Jed Morgan, Cameron Smith

Defending champion: Inaugural event

Past Aussie winners: Nil

TV times: Live from 4am Saturday, Sunday and Monday on 7 Plus.

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