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Golf Australia Express : Issue 4
LAST TIME AROUND LAST YEAR’S inaugural Greenbrier Classic will be remembered for producing one of the finest rounds of golf in history. Shooting the fifth 59 in PGA Tour history will do that. And the fact it was achieved on the final day to win the tournament by a shot makes the moment even sweeter. Breaking a four-year victory drought, Australia’s Stuart Appleby’s final round 11 under (including nine birdies and an eagle) enabled him to erase an eight-shot deficit and beat 54-hole leader Jeff Overton. It was a dramatic turnaround in form for the unflappable Appleby. Prior to the Greenbrier he had only managed the break 70 in 21 of his 80 rounds that season. “ We spend so much time trying to have rounds like today,” Appleby said after the win. “Forget whether it’s a 50-something, you’re just trying to have rounds where you’re scaring the hole. And when you do and they drop, it’s a pleasant feeling. “ You just never seem to get enough of them.” Player partner Jimmy July 28-31, 2011 The Old White TPC, West Virginia, USA Purse: US$6,000,000 Defending Champ: Stuart Appleby (AUS) What’s happening on the PGA Tour this week PEEK THE “He hit some really great shots and made all his putts. There you go, 59.” — Jimmy Walker, witness to Applebly’s amazing 59. FIELD OF DREAMS Walker knew Appleby was in the zone. “It was cool watching him do that,” Walker said. “I’ve never played with anybody that shot that low. He made everything. It was really cool to watch. “ We were talking down the last hole, and I told my caddie, no chance he misses it. He’s in the zone today.” “He putted unbelievable,” Walker said. “He made everything today. I mean, that’s what you do. He hit some really great shots and made all his putts. There you go, 59.” OTG GREENBRIER CLASSIC FUN FACT Prior to heading off to the first tee for his final round last year, Stuart Appleby was analysing the scorecard of the 59 Sam Snead shot in a pro-am at The Greenbrier in 1959. He did the maths in the locker-room, and even then, he couldn’t believe it. “It was just phenomenal,” Appleby said. “ Then there’s the ball and the club [Snead used], and you’re like, how did he do that?” PLAYERS TO WATCH ONTHE back of a second place finish at the British Open, Phil Mickelson, leads a star-studded field into this year’s Greenbrier Classic. In good touch, you can bet he will be shooting for low rounds to match the efforts of last year’s leaders. And this suits his game. Phil the Thrill will be out to please the West Virginian galleries and in the process gun down compatriot Steve Stricker as the highest ranked American in world golf. Sergio Garcia returns to Greenbrier as an improved player on the 2010 version. The Spaniard struggled for much of 2010 getting his game right and making cuts, but his form over the past month has been as good as anyone’s: 7th, 2nd and 9th in the US Open, BMW International Open and British Open respectively. And how could we look past Stuart Appleby as a contender? Anyone whocanshoota59ona course knows how to play it, and as a place of fond memories the belief these guys need to beat the rest will be strong in Apples this week.