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Golf Australia Express : Issue 17
QUESTION: WHO’S the only golfer to twice win the Australian Open heading into a Presidents Cup clash in Australia? Answer: Greg Chalmers. The Western Australian followed his 1998 victory at Royal Adelaide by holding off a fast-finishing John Senden to win at Sydney’s The Lakes on Sunday. And Chalmers has gotta love the number 13. It’s been 13 years since he claimed his first Stonehaven Cup and after finishing this Aussie Open at 13-under, he again held aloft his national open’s silverware. And you guessed it, on the 13th day of the month. The 38-year-old secured victory with a closing final round 3-under 69 at but was made to wait it out in the clubhouse. Fellow Australian, Senden, nearly forced a playoff, narrowly missing a snaking 35-footer at the 18th. An emotional Chalmers, who beat a star-studded field including eight of the world’s top 20, fought TWO TIMES A CHALM back tears during the presentation. “I’m just extremely excited and extremely pleased to win this tournament twice,” he said. “You can stumble into it once but to win it again, in this field, one of the strongest fields we’ve had in Australian golf for a long time, that does something for me, that really floats my boat. “I think I stumbled into it when I was 26 ... I know what it takes now, it’s hard to win.” Overnight leader Senden, who went agonisingly close to joining Chalmers at 13-under, started his final round with four bogeys in the first seven holes. It was an uncustomary display of poor iron shots by the man ranked 5th this season on the PGA Tour in greens in regulation. Senden stormed home with birdies at the 11th, 13th, 14th and 17th. But the late surge wasn’t enough, finishing outright second at 12-under. A day shy of the second anniversary of his last title win—the 2009 Australian Masters—former world No.1 Tiger Woods came from six shots back overnight to hit an eagle and five birdies for a 67 and third place at 11-under. “It could have been really low today, a couple of drives on the back nine cost me,” the 35-year-old Woods said. “I fought real hard all day but it looks as though I’ve come up just short. “I’m just going to keep plugging along,” said the 14-times major winner. “It’s just nice to be playing and not on the sidelines.” Chalmers won $270,000 and after the win moved from world No. 215 to world No.104. OTG FINAL STANDINGS 1 GREG CHALMERS AUS -13 $270,000 2 JOHN SENDEN AUS -12 $153,000 3 TIGER WOODS USA -11 $101,250 T4 GEOFF OGILVY AUS -9 $55,500 T4 ADAM SCOTT AUS -9 $55,500 T4 NICK WATNEY USA -9 $55,500 T4 NICK O’HERN AUS -9 $55,500 T4 JASON DAY AUS -9 $55,500 T9 AARON BADDELEY AUS -8 $39,000 T9 RYAN HALLER AUS -8 $39,000 WRAP THE WHAT JUST HAPPENED ON THE AUSTRALASIAN TOUR