06 Oct 2021 | Professional golf |
Aussies on Tour: Leishman rolls the dice in Las Vegas
by PGA of Australia
By Tony Webeck
Victorian Marc Leishman returns to TPC Summerlin for the first time in more than a decade as he seeks to continue his strong start to the 2021/2022 PGA Tour season at the Shriners Children’s Open in Las Vegas.
With the CJ Cup to follow next week also in Vegas, a two-week swing in the Nevada desert was obviously too good an opportunity for Leishman to pass up despite a limited and less-than-stellar record at the venue.
The 2009 PGA Tour Rookie of the Year, Leishman’s debut at TPC Summerlin was his final event of the season and resulted in a missed cut with rounds of 75-71. Twelve months later he reversed the scores but endured the same outcome, again not required for the weekend action.
The 37-year-old had not played in Vegas for a decade before taking part in last year’s CJ Cup at Shadow Creek that was moved from Korea due to COVID-19 and again he failed to break 70, finishing tied for 52nd in the limited field event.
Facing the prospect of being unable to return to Australia this summer, Leishman has sought to make an early impression on the FedEx Cup points list, currently in ninth spot after finishing tied for fourth at the Fortinet Championship, in his only start of the season to date.
Despite attending the University of Nevada-Las Vegas for one year prior to turning professional in 2000, Adam Scott’s experience at TPC Summerlin is even less than Leishman’s.
Perhaps imbibing the desert air of his college days brought back fond memories as Scott opened with a round of 5-under 66 on debut in 2019, following it up with a round of 67 to be five strokes off the lead.
A third round of 6-under 65 moved Scott up to a share of eighth through 54 holes but a final round of 3-over 74 resulted in a tumble down the leaderboard on Sunday.
Another name familiar to Aussie golf fans who is an unexpected inclusion in this week’s PGA Tour field is 2010 British Amateur champion Jin Jeong.
Jeong, who moved to Melbourne from Korea as a 16-year-old and now lives in the US, has spent the past two years teaching after injury curtailed what was a promising start on the European Tour.
Winner of the 2013 Perth International, Jeong’s last appearance on a major tour was at the 2018 Oates Vic Open but shot 63 in qualifying on Monday to book his ninth appearance on the PGA Tour.
If the Aussie boys are chasing some good fortune in Vegas this week in an event that has been good to theour countrymen in the past, Hannah Green will be hoping that her pro-am performance at the LPGA Tour’s Cognizant Founders Cup in New Jersey is a good omen for the week ahead.
With her first swing of the day Green made an ace that shocked the West Australian even more so than her playing partners.
The equation is simple for Robyn Choi at the Symetra Tour Championship in Florida; win and earn promotion to the LPGA Tour in 2022.
Six of the top 10 in the Race to the Card have already done enough to move up next year with Choi needing a victory to move from her current position of 23rd to inside the top 10.
Round 1 tee times ADST
Shriners Children’s Open TPC Summerlin, Las Vegas, Nevada 1.13am Cam Davis, Nick Taylor, Kevin Tway 11.13am* Adam Scott, Hideki Matsuyama, Viktor Hovland 1.57am Marc Leishman, Kevin Chappell, William McGirt 6.13am* Matt Jones, Michael Thompson, Lee Hodges
Defending champion: Martin Laird Past Aussie winners: Greg Norman (1986), Stuart Appleby (2003), Andre Stolz (2004), Rod Pampling (2017) Top Aussie prediction: Marc Leishman TV schedule: Live 8am-11am Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday on Fox Sports 503
Acciona Open de España Club de Campo Villa de Madrid, Madrid, Spain 5.50pm Scott Hend, Julian Suri, Jordan Smith 6pm* Ryan Fox, Wilco Nienaber, Jazz Janewattananond 7pm Jason Scrivener, Daniel Van Tonder, Alejandro Canizares 11pm Min Woo Lee, Rafa Cabrera Bello, Richard Bland 11.40pm* Maverick Antcliff, Garrick Porteous, Darren Fichardt
Defending champion: Jon Rahm (2019) Past Aussie winners: Rodger Davis (1990) Top Aussie prediction: Min Woo Lee TV schedule: Live 11pm-4am Thursday, Friday; Live 9pm-3am Saturday, Sunday on Fox Sports 503
Cognizant Founders Cup Mountain Ridge Country Club, New Jersey 10.15pm Sarah Kemp, Albane Valenzuela, Lindsey Weaver 10.37pm* Katherine Kirk, Gerina Piller, Jing Yan 11.21pm Hannah Green, Hyo Joo Kim, Cheyenne Knight 11.32pm Su Oh, Ana Belac, Perrine Delacour 11.54pm Wenyung Keh, Dottie Ardina, Daniela Darquea 3.28am Minjee Lee, Celine Boutier, Jessica Korda 4.45am Sarah Jane Smith, Amari Avery (a), Mind Muangkhumsakul
Defending champion: Jin Young Ko (2019) Past Aussie winners: Karrie Webb (2011, 2014) Top Aussie prediction: Minjee Lee TV schedule: Live 5am-8am Friday; Live 4am-6am Saturday; Live 3am-6am Sunday, Monday on Fox Sports 503
Japan Golf Tour
Bridgestone Open Sodegaura Country Club (Sodegaura Cse), Chiba 10.30am Dylan Perry, Kunihiro Kamii, Ryutaro Nagano 11.20am* Anthony Quayle, Daijiro Izumida, Tatsunori Nukaga 11.50am* David Bransdon, Naoto Nakanishi, Rahil Gangjee 12.10pm Todd Sinnott, Kosuke Sunagawa, Yuki Kono
Defending champion: Shugo Imahira (2019) Past Aussie winners: Graham Marsh (1974), Roger Mackay (1989), Scott Laycock (2002) Top Aussie prediction: Dylan Perry
Korean PGA Tour
Genesis Championship Jack Nicklaus Golf Club Korea (Links Cse), Incheon, South Korea 10.10am* Won Joon Lee 1.40pm Junseok Lee
Defending champion: Tae-hoon Kim Past Aussie winners: Nil Top Aussie prediction: Junseok Lee
Symetra Tour Championship LPGA International (Jones Cse), Daytona Beach, Florida 11pm Stephanie Na, Moa Folke, Alejandra Llaneza 11.22pm Robyn Choi, Kendra Dalton, Allie White 12.28am Julienne Soo, Jaclyn Lee, Britney Yada 3.31am* Soo Jin Lee, Clariss Guce, Alazne Urizar Zapata
Defending champion: Frida Kinhult Past Aussie winners: Kristie Smith (2010) Top Aussie prediction: Robyn Choi
LET Access Series
Terre Blanche Ladies Open Golf De Terre Blanche, France Aussies in the field: Kristalle Blum, Amy Walsh
Defending champion: Sarah Schober (2019) Past Aussie winners: Nil Top Aussie prediction: Kristalle Blum
Constellation Furyk and Friends Timuquana Country Club, Jacksonville, Florida Australasians in the field: Steven Alker, Robert Allenby, Stuart Appleby, Stephen Leaney, David McKenzie, Rod Pampling, John Senden
Defending champion: Inaugural event Past Aussie winners: Nil Top Aussie prediction: Stephen Leaney TV schedule: Live 6am-8am Saturday, Sunday, Monday on Fox Sports 503
Riegler & Partner Legends Golf Club Murhof, Austria Australasians in the field: Michael Campbell, Peter Fowler, Michael Long, Glenn Joyner
Defending champion: Inaugural event Past Aussie winners: Nil Top Aussie prediction: Peter Fowler
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