Anthony Summers qualifies for US Open

OneAsia stalwart Anthony Summers found the form he’d been seeking all season to win gruelling sectional qualifying in Chicago and make it into next week’s US Open Championship at The Olympic Club in San Francisco.

Australian Summers shone at the Village Links of Glen Ellyn, shooting rounds of 66 and 67 for an 11-under total of 133, a stroke better than US PGA Tour veteran Tim Herron, who also qualified.

Anthony Summers Anthony Summers (Credit: Paul Lakatos/OneAsia)

Other Aussies to make it through this week were Rod Pampling. and Alistair Presnell.

“I’m so excited,” said Summers, who was only talked into making the journey to qualify by his sponsor after missing the cut at the Volvo China Open earlier this year.

“I have never played in a major before and it will be an awesome experience. I have a bunch of friends who will be over here on a US Open trip, so will have plenty of support out there as a bonus.”

Summers, 42, who hails from New South Wales, is currently 36th on the OneAsia Order of Merit with earnings of US $11,597.67 from four tournaments. His best finish on the circuit remains joint seventh in last year’s Nanshan China Masters.

He chose Chicago to try for qualifying as he could save money by sleeping on the couch of a good friend who lives in the city.

“I hadn’t seen him in a while so it was a good chance to catch up,” he said.

Monday saw final sectional qualifying at 11 courses across the United States, with nearly 1,000 players vying for a remaining 62 places in the 112th edition of the tournament.

Summers’ Facebook page was inundated with messages of support and congratulations from friends and fellow OneAsia players.

“Congrats mate what an amazing effort. I’m sure you will have the best time ever,” said Ryan Haller, who missed out on qualifying at the Japan sectionals last month.

“Mate!! Great playing. Can’t wait to see you at the top of the leaderboard again next week,” said Nick Cullen, who currently lies second on the OneAsia Order of Merit with US $180, 686 after winning the Enjoy Jakarta Indonesia Open earlier this year.

Summers has set modest goals for next week.

“I just plan to enjoy it,” he said.

“I wasn’t going to come over but had a quick car park chat with my sponsor one morning after the China Open where I had missed the cut by one and he convinced me to come over and have a crack.”

“We had a Plan B option and that was to go with him and a few of his mates to Vegas next weekend if I didn’t qualify and then join them on their US Open trip which included rounds at Pebble Beach, Spyglass Hill and Spanish Bay, but I guess neither of us will be doing that as he will caddy for me in the Open now as Plan A was always a better option.”