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Golf Australia Express : GA Express 238
T HIS week’s Zurich Classic of New Orleans will be contested by 80, two-man teams after a change in the format of the event was announced by the PGA Tour last November. Players selected their own teammates and while the majority of pairings are easily explained by common ties, other combinations leave you scratching your head. Among the obvious combinations are Ryder Cup teammates Henrik Stenson and Justin Rose, Auburn University alumni Jason Dufner and Patton Kizzire, Arizona residents Ricky Barnes and Matt Jones and South Africans Branden Grace and Louis Oosthuizen. Grace reflected how simple some players found it selecting a teammate when he said of teaming up with Oosthuizen: “We’ve been mates for a long time and we play good together.” Queenslanders John Senden and Rod Pampling make up the only all Australian pairing and will be hoping to channel the successful State of Origin team. Although some teams, like Rickie Fowler and Jason Day, may initially appear to make strange bedfellows, a deeper look unearths the reason for their combination. In the case of Fowler and Day, both are ambassadors for the events title sponsor, Zurich, explaining their partnership and early commitment to the tournament. Aside from the easily explained teams, there are some pairings in the field that just don’t make sense. Here are six of the strangest duos teeing it up at TPC Louisiana. E MANY PGA Tour friendships are formed through sharing similar interests or living close to each other. This duo doesn’t fit either of those criteria. Age is where the similarities end for the 39-year-old Geoff Ogilvy and 41-year-old Ian Poulter. The latter lives in Florida, has a penchant for fast cars and is an intense, fiery competitor known to spit fire in team competitions. The laidback Ogilvy, however, lives in Arizona and has a keen interest in golf history, course design and voices well- articulated musings about the game. GEOFF OGILVY & WHAT does a 23-year-old American and 41-year-old South African have in common? Not much it seems. Bryson DeChambeau, the young American is incredibly scientific in his approach to the game, with a unique swing and a single-length set of irons and wedges. Sabbatini also swings the club in a unique way, but is perhaps best known for his strong opinions and statements, including a long running feud with Tiger Woods. DeChambeau’s odd approach and Sabbatini’s controversial nature are perhaps the reason for this pairing, with a lack of others in the field willing to pair with either player. BRYSON DECHAMBEAU &
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