13th Beach attracts strong fields for Vic Open

Richard Green will be looking to kick start a return to form in his home state when the $150,000 Oates Victorian Open tees off at the Thirteenth Beach Golf Links on the Bellarine Peninsula, south-west of Melbourne this week.

The left hander has been caddying for girlfriend Marianne Skarpnord over the past two weeks on the Gold Coast and at the Women’s Australian Open but will swap back to his regular role this week while Skarpnord tees up in the Women’s Victorian Open, being played simultaneously over Thirteenth Beach’s Beach and Creek courses from February 20 – 23.

Richard Green Richard Green (Credit: Anthony Powter)

Green shot a final round 64 in last year’s Vic Open to tie for 14th and is looking forward to getting back to be part of the exciting format again this year.

“I’ve said this before; it was the most fun we had on tour all year and to be at home and down that part of the world.”

Green said, “Barwon Heads is a great destination and a very relaxing environment. The golf course is a lot of fun to play, there were so many people out there watching and it had a really good atmosphere.”

Green endured a disappointing year on the European Tour in 2013, logging only one top ten finish and missing 9 cuts in 24 starts, and also missed the first three cuts of the 2014 season during the Tour’s Desert Swing in January.

Now ranked 363 in the world, a win against one of the strongest fields for a Tier Two PGA Tour of Australasia event would do wonders for his confidence before he returns to the European Tour at The Hassan II Golf Trophy in Morocco in March.

Green joins players of the calibre of local Torquay resident Jarrod Lyle, Peter O’Malley, Nick Cullen, Michael Sim, Perth International champion JinJeong, Stephen Leaney, Matthew Griffin, Bradley Hughes, Steve Conran and recent Victorian PGA champion Gareth Paddison competing for the right to add their names to the historic trophy.

On the women’s side, the $150,000 Vic Open is the ALPG’s season-ending event and will also feature a stellar field headed by defending champion Stacey Keating, Laura Davies, Joanna Klatten, Sarah Kemp, Lindsey Wright, Sophie Gustafson, Sarah-Jane Smith and Skarpnord.