PGA Tour of Australasia resumes at Vic PGA
The challenging layouts of the Heritage Golf and Country Club in Victoria’s Yarra Valley will be the setting for the first event of the PGA Tour of Australasia’s calendar year at the Lexus of Blackburn Victorian PGA Championship tomorrow.
The tournament will rotate between the Jack Nicklaus signature-designed St John and Tony Cashmore-designed Henley courses with a pro-am format adopted this year over the first two rounds of the $100,000 event.
Matt Griffin (Credit: Anthony Powter)
The Pro-am format was acknowledged by defending champion David McKenzie recently as an initiative that works very well at the NZ PGA Championship.
“It’s nice to provide Australian golf fans with the opportunity to experience golf in a different way to their social games or club comps. Everyone always has a great week at the NZ PGA so it should be a huge success here too,” McKenzie said.
“The course was in fantastic condition in January this year and I can’t wait to get back there for the Vic PGA,” added David Bransdon, who won the Lexus of Blackburn Heritage Classic at the Heritage in earlier 2013.
Local hope Andrew Martin and Queenslander Rika Batibasaga will return to play buoyed with confidence after advancing through the first stage of the Asian Tour School in Thailand last week.
A number of Australian players will be in Thailand at further stages being held opposite the Victorian PGA, however the field still boasts a classy look with Japan Tour regular Kurt Barnes, Matthew Griffin, former Australian PGA champion Daniel Popovic, Kiwis Michael Hendry, Mark Brown and Gareth Paddison and veterans Peter O’Malley, Bradley Hughes and Scott Laycock all keen to add their names to the trophy.