06 Feb 2023 | Professional golf |

Aussies on Tour: Herbert, Ruffels finish top-five

by Australian Golf Media

Lucas Herbert and Gabi Ruffels.

By Tony Webeck

Lucas Herbert is poised to return to the top 50 in the world rankings for the first time since August last year after recording a second third-place finish in as many weeks.

Entering the final round of the Asian Tour’s PIF Saudi International seven strokes off the lead, Herbert bounced back from an early double bogey to close with a brilliant five-under 65 and outright third at 15-under.

Six birdies between the third and 10th holes saw the 27-year-old finish the tournament four strokes back of Mexican Abraham Ancer, banking $US300,000 ($AUD433,396.50) and a projected boost to his world ranking inside the all-important top 50.

A third place finish at the Hero Dubai Desert Classic elevated Herbert from 67th to 53rd and the expectation is that he will advance further up the ranking courtesy of his latest performance.

Just as Herbert as made an outstanding start to his 2023 campaign, Gabi Ruffels displayed her intentions in her debut tournament as a member of the Ladies European Tour.

Already a four-time top-25 finisher in major championships, Ruffels closed out the Magical Kenya Ladies Open with a round of one-over 74 to finish solo fourth, 10 shots back of runaway winner Aditi Ashok.

A front nine of four-over ended Brett Drewitt’s hopes of victory at the Korn Ferry Tour’s Panama Championship, securing a tie for eighth as Curtis Luck climbed into a share of 14th with a final round of four-under 66.

The PGA TOUR will go into a Monday finish for the first time this year, Aaron Baddeley’s tie for 36th (through 15 holes) the best of the Aussie contingent.


Asian Tour PIF Saudi International Royal Greens Golf and Country Club, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia 1            Abraham Ancer 63-66-64-68—261           $US1m 3            Lucas Herbert    68-65-67-65—265           $300,000 T6          Travis Smyth      69-69-65-65—268           $140,333.33 T6          Marc Leishman 68-64-70-66—268           $140,333.33 T46        Wade Ormsby   69-70-69-69—277           $23,750 T46        Andrew Dodt     68-68-70-71—277           $23,750 T53        Jediah Morgan  73-66-67-72—278           $19,416.67 T58        Kevin Yuan         70-68-74-68—280           $16,000 T58        Todd Sinnott      72-67-73-68—280           $16,000 T58        Scott Hend         72-68-72-68—280           $16,000 T58        Matt Jones         68-68-74-70—280           $16,000 MC        Cameron Smith 73-69—142 MC        Zach Murray      72-70—142 MC        Jack Thompson 77-72—149 MC        Louis Dobbelaar              86-70—156

DP World Tour Ras Al Khaimah Championship Al Hamra GC, Ras Al Khaimah, UAE 1            Daniel Gavins    68-66-68-69—271           €311,954.42 T11        Ryan Fox (NZ)    67-72-68-69—276           €32,663.46 T42        Daniel Hillier (NZ)            70-69-68-76—283           €9,909.14

Ladies European Tour Magical Kenya Ladies Open Vipingo Ridge, Kenya 1            Aditi Ashok        67-70-69-74—280           €45,000 4            Gabriela Ruffels 74-71-71-74—290           €13,500 T25        Momoka Kobori (NZ)              74-74-72-78—298           $3,975 MC        Whitney Hillier  75-83—158

Korn Ferry Tour Panama Championship Panama Golf Club, Panama City, Panama 1            Pierceson Coody             72-68-71-66—277           $US180,000 Won on the first hole of sudden death playoff T8          Brett Drewitt     73-66-68-73—280           $24,775 T14        Curtis Luck         70-72-73-66—281           $14,605 T31        Rhein Gibson     72-68-72-71—283           $5,960

PGA TOUR AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am Pebble Beach Golf Links, Pebble Beach, California Round 4 to be completed Monday T38        Aaron Baddeley 65-74-72—211 T64        Geoff Ogilvy       70-75-69—214 T69        Greg Chalmers  67-77-70—214 MC        Harrison Endycott           74-70-75—219 WD        Cameron Percy  74

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