03 Jul 2024 | Professional golf |

Smylie grabs a spot at Royal Troon

by Martin Blake

One of Australia's best young talents, Elvis Smylie, has grabbed a cherished berth in the Open Championship at Royal Troon later this month.

The 22-year-old Queenslander played his way into the field via qualifying at Royal Cinque Ports in the UK overnight.

Needing to finish top-four, he carded 67-74 to finish tied-second and secure his place in what will be his first Open, and his first major championship.

"Just saying that I’ve qualified for The Open gives me goosebumps," he said afterward. "The last time I went to The Open was at Royal Troon in 2016, when I was 14-years-old.

"Going there as a spectator eight years ago and now going back as a competitor - I don’t know what to say. I just can’t wait for the experience. “I’ve already FaceTimed my dad (Peter) who’s back in Australia and he said he’s going to book a flight over. My mum (Liz) is already over here commentating on Wimbledon so everyone’s going to come and watch me at Troon. I’m very excited.”

Twelve Australians played across four venues of qualifying but Smylie was the only one to pass through.

The Golf Australia rookie squad member is a former Australian Boys Amateur champion and has had some good results on the Challenger PGA Tour of Australasia since turning pro in 2021, despite not managing his first professional victory.

There are now six Australians in the field for Royal Troon from 18 July - Smylie, Cam Smith, Min Woo Lee, Adam Scott, Jasper Stubbs and Jason Day. There are four New Zealanders - Mike Hendry, Kazuma Kobori and Ryan Fox and Daniel Hillier.

More to come

Elvis Smylie Open flag image
Elvis Smylie celebrates today with an Open flag. Photo: Getty

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