Australia Golf

Get off the Shark’s back

Get off the Shark’s back

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995265

FOR starters, let me state that I love Rory McIlroy!

I admire the bounce in his step between shots and the enthusiasm for the game that he continually puts on display.

And those tee shots he keeps reeling off – they’re just awesome – and they make me want to go and play.

And I also like the fact he always attempts to answer every question put to him with an admirable honesty.

But Rory, please don’t try and turn us against our Aussie icon, Greg Norman. That won’t get you anywhere in this country. Like Rory, Tiger too has called for the Shark to quit as boss of LIV Golf Tour.

Do you seriously think Greg has anything other than the best interests of golf at heart when he pushes for changes in the game and promotes ‘his’ LIV Golf Tour?

Just take a quick look at your local golf club if you have any doubts.

Half of them are there because of Greg Norman and what he brought to the game at his peak in the 1980s and ’90s. And still does in some areas of the game. 

Are there any of us who haven’t worn a Great White Shark golf shirt at some stage of our lives?

Heck, I’ve tried to play as many of his course designs as I could afford to travel to; I’ve drunk the wine he endorses, I’ve tried the golf clubs [Cobra] that he endorsed, watched his videos, and followed almost his every move for the best part of 30 years.

So, don’t turn around and tell me – or any other Aussie for that matter – that he should be removed as the commissioner and CEO of LIV Golf.

He’s smarter than that – and hopefully so are we to even consider such a prospect.

I’m reliably informed The Great White Shark Enterprises [that’s Greg] has a net worth of more than $400m – and that’s before his LIV contract – so it’s not as if he needs the money. No, he’s doing it all for the good of the game.

And when Greg revealed he was bringing the tour ‘Down Under’ to Adelaide this year, the first thing I did was log on to see if I could afford a flight to the capital of South Australia to watch the likes of Dustin Johnson, Byson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Louis Oosthuizen, Phil Mickelson and Sergio Garcia in action at The Grange from April 21-23.

It may be my only chance to see them in action in my lifetime.

And it’s just a shame that Rory won’t be there to join them. Not yet anyway!

Rory McIlroy wants Greg Norman to quit LIV Golf. Greg Norman is not about to heed Rory’s advice.

Player Impact Program

ASK anyone at your local golf club to explain the Player Impact Program (PIP) and you’ll probably draw a blank.

Until recently, you could put me in that category too.

Yet maybe that explains why Rory McIlroy and even the injury and accident-prone Tiger Woods are so ‘pro’ the US PGA Tour. It’s actually putting money in their pockets.

And every time we Google them, it probably adds a bit more.

Not that they need it, but the US PGA Tour actually pays an additional financial bonus pool for the biggest names in golf – and players are judged by their influence ‘off the course’ rather than merely through tournament results.

It’s a program designed to compensate players that produce the most engagement from fans and sponsors.

In 2022, the PIP’s pool of money was a staggering $US100m spread across 20 players, who were chosen through “objective measurement criteria” via five categories.

And get this, the most valuable gets $US15m for his efforts. That’s Mr Woods. Finish bottom five and you only receive $US2m.

After Tiger came Rory ($12m) followed by Jordan Spieth ($9m), Justin Thomas ($7.5m), Jon Rahm ($6m), Scottie Scheffler ($5.5m), Xander Schauffele ($5m), Matt Fitzpatrick ($5m), Will Zalatoris ($5m), Collin Morikawa ($3m), Billy Horshel ($3m) with Rickie Fowler, Adam Scott, Jason Day, Patrick Cantlay and Viktor Hovland each picking up $2m.

It seems the list is not published the way the world rankings and even the FedEx Cup points are.

And those battlers sure need a few more dollars [not] in their pockets for ‘plugging’ the PGA Tour whenever possible.

Guess what? The program might be leaking some oil.

More players are tipped to jump ship and join LIV this year … and rumours are a few sponsors are seriously considering pulling the pin as well.

The post Get off the Shark’s back first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



https://www.insidegolf.com.au/opinion/get-off-the-sharks-back/
WANTED: CLUB NEWS STORIES

WANTED: CLUB NEWS STORIES

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995266

WHAT is happening at your golf club? Inside Golf and readers of the magazine would love to know.

As Australia’s most-read golfing publication, Inside Golf is always on the lookout for interesting news items that will help promote the game of golf to a wider audience.

If you would like to see your golf club mentioned in the magazine, feel free to contact us. The good news is it won’t cost anything if it appears in our Club News section.

Ideas: You may have a new staff member or club professional you want to tell readers about. Then again your club may have a redesigned golf hole, made improvements to the golf course or clubhouse.

Other news items of interest could be: Unusual incidents, extraordinary feats or scores; aces and albatrosses; age breakers; a club member who is an extraordinary volunteer or a team of dedicated volunteers; junior and women’s news; upcoming events and functions (we need at least a month’s notice on this); grants received and where it will be spent; pro-ams and even funny incidents; committee changes, etc. Don’t forget to send us a photo as well.

They say no news is good news, but for golf clubs that don’t promote their own golf club is, well, bad news.

Who knows, your club may attract new members and more golfers will want to turn up for a social round?

Send your news to david@insidegolf.com.au and he’ll do the rest.

The post WANTED: CLUB NEWS STORIES first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



https://www.insidegolf.com.au/news/club-news-news/wanted-club-news-stories/
Smith stays focused until the very end

Smith stays focused until the very end

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995275

By Peter Owen

WHEN Cameron Smith putted out for a par on the 17th green at Royal Queensland on the final day of the Australian PGA, his three-stroke lead assuredly enough for victory, the raucous crowd on that party hole begged him to toss his ball into the stands, just like almost every player had done throughout the long day.

Instead, he slipped the ball into the right pocket of his slacks, quietly waited until his playing partners had completed their work, then purposefully strode through the crowd to the 18th tee, not a glimpse of a smile on his face.

Standing in that gallery was Smith’s long-time coach Grant Field who, minutes earlier, had turned to a friend and whispered, “I’ll bet he doesn’t throw the ball to the crowd. Not that he doesn’t want to join in the fun … he just knows the job isn’t over.”

The crowd would have to wait another 20 minutes, until Smith had blasted his ball from a greenside bunker to within a metre of the hole and then methodically holed the putt to claim the title, for their hero to break into a grin and celebrate a wonderful victory.

Field has been guiding Smith’s development as a golfer since they first met at a junior clinic on the Sunshine Coast nearly 20 years ago, Smith then a fresh-faced 10-year-old with an uncanny touch around the green and an ambition to become a champion.

“Lots of kids have similar dreams,” Field said, “but not too many have the combination of skill and commitment to become a touring professional, to become a winner, and then to become a champion.

“He’s stepped up at every level.”

Cam Smith punches the air after winning his third Australian PGA Champiosnhip. Photo: Golf Australia.

Field speaks of Smith’s utter professionalism, his diligence and his commitment to the process of being successful at the highest level of golf.

“He was the first player on the range at 6am on Monday,” Field said. “And during the rain delay on the final day he spent the time in the locker room with his trainer, working on keeping his body ready. No other player was doing that – just Cam.”

Field spoke, too, about the additional obligations Smith faced as a major winner, a returning champion and being the virtual face of the tournament.

“Take the golf out of it and consider what he had to take on during the week,” he said. “Nobody had a tenth of his workload, and I know the effort it took. He was very tired.”

Smith recorded his third Australian PGA Championship after a final round that took just over seven hours and included two suspensions of play because of lightning and rain. After being tied for the lead after 11 holes, he broke away from his challengers for a three-stroke victory, courtesy of precise iron play and nerveless putting.

For the record, he shot rounds of 68-65-69-68 for a 72-hole total of 14-under-par 270. Western Australian Jason Scrivener (65-67-74-67) and Japan’s Ryo Hisatsune (67-70-71-65) shared second place on 273.

Smith’s win – his third PGA title after successes at Royal Pines on the Gold Coast in 2017 and 2018 – places him alongside Peter Senior, Robert Allenby, Peter Lonard, Bill Dunk, Kel Nagle, Ossie Pickworth and Norman von Nida as the only players with at least three Australian PGA championships.

But few would argue that his successes throughout the world in 2022 have elevated him to a level that not even those legends of Australian golf could claim.

He began the year by shooting 34-under par to win the Tournament of Champions in Hawaii. He followed up with an emphatic win in the US Players Championship, an event considered by many to be the fifth major.

Then came his magnificent victory over Rory McIlroy in the Open at St Andrews, and his first LIV tournament victory in Chicago. And now the Australian PGA. It is an astonishing stretch of consistent excellence that gives Smith legitimate claims to being considered the world’s best golfer. 

Certainly the thousands of people who crowded the fairways, tee boxes and greens during the four days at Royal Queensland, and cheered every shot, were evidence of the 29-year-old’s extraordinary popularity.

“He’s very relatable,” Field said. “You look at him and feel like he could be a mate – somebody you’d be happy to have a beer with. At the same time he’s one of the best golfers on the planet.”

And Field is convinced he’s going to get even better.

“There’s plenty of improvement in him,” he said. “He’s getting more professional in everything he does and he still has a great desire to achieve more – to win more majors.

“He’s not close to being done.” 

The post Smith stays focused until the very end first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



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GM Neil on course after court duty

GM Neil on course after court duty

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995267
A different ball game for Neil Goffet at Hawks Nest Golf Club.

FORMER basketball boss Neil Goffet has moved from the court to the course in his new role as general manager at Hawks Nest Golf Club.

A former journalist at the Newcastle Herald, Goffet spent the past nine years as general manager at Newcastle Basketball where the association recorded incredible success during his reign.

He replaces the retiring Greg Acret, who called time on his 46-year career in the club and hotel industry in late October.

Acret did an exceptional job in turning the fortunes of the club around following a difficult period six years ago and now the club is back to firing on all cylinders.

“The board of directors were extremely grateful for the job Greg did and my aim is to continue on with the great work that has been done by Greg and the board,” Goffet said.

“It’s a great golf course and it’s located in one of the most beautiful places on the east coast of Australia.

“There are lots of retirees here from Sydney and Newcastle and it’s not hard to work out why when you have a look at the amazing waterways that surround Hawks Nest and Tea Gardens.”

Hawks Nest Golf Club is less than an hour from Newcastle and just 2.5 hours from Sydney and, as they say, it is “worth the drive”. 

The post GM Neil on course after court duty first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



https://www.insidegolf.com.au/news/club-news-news/gm-neil-on-course-after-court-duty/
Anglesea Golf Club elects first woman president

Anglesea Golf Club elects first woman president

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995252
Jules Rolfe created history at Anglesea Golf Club.

VICTORIA’S Anglesea Golf Club located on the Great Ocean Road in the Surf Coast Shire has elected Jules Rolfe as its new president.

In a high turn-out election, Jules Rolfe got the nod to become the first woman president of the club in its more than 70-year history.

Rolfe is a keen golfer and lives locally. 

Outgoing president Mike Grossman said: “I am delighted to have Jules take over the reins here at Anglesea. 

“She has previous experience on our board and also worked as a chief executive officer and director in the not-for-profit sector before retiring.”

Rolfe’s term is for two years and she will be working with current board members Geoff Hose, Neville Henderson and Peter Wagner. 

Marg McCarthy will join as a newly-elected director and an additional woman director will also be nominated. 

Asked about the future of the club, Rolfe said: “The golf club is in a sound financial position and I am looking forward to working with the board, manager David Sanders and course superintendent Brett Balloch. 

“We have a number of initiatives underway, including completion of the townhouse project, planning tree re-vegetation on the golf course and developing junior golf,” she added.

Anglesea Golf Club welcomes new members and green fee players as well as visitors to the kangaroo tours, bistro, driving range and mini golf. 

The post Anglesea Golf Club elects first woman president first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



https://www.insidegolf.com.au/news/club-news-news/anglesea-golf-club-elects-first-woman-president/
Part-timer Trent fresh for Maroochy River Open

Part-timer Trent fresh for Maroochy River Open

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995253

TRENT Butlin, who describes himself as a part-time golfer these days, has long had a love affair with the signature 18th hole at Maroochy River.

The long-hitting Butlin once famously drove the green on this difficult, dog-leg hole which requires a tee-shot of at least 300 metres to clear the pond that guards the front of the green. On another occasion he scored a rare eagle two on the par-4 monster.

Playing with a group of mates in the Maroochy River Open from the tough black tees recdntly, he scored a more orthodox par-4 on the 18th, a hole rated the hardest on the course. It allowed Butlin to sign for a par round of 72 and tie with Headland teenager, Ben Duncombe.

The two golfers – who had each represented the old Horton Park Golf Club in junior pennant competition some years ago – played in the morning and were required to return in the late afternoon for a sudden-death playoff to decide the winner.

Duncombe’s drive on the first playoff hole found the water, and Butlin, who plays so rarely these days he has taken out a remote membership of the Howlong Golf Club on the Murray to keep his handicap, two-putted for a regulation par and a one-stroke victory.

The post Part-timer Trent fresh for Maroochy River Open first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



https://www.insidegolf.com.au/news/club-news-news/part-timer-trent-fresh-for-maroochy-river-open/
Invincibles Tour draws curtain on 20 years of developing golf champions

Invincibles Tour draws curtain on 20 years of developing golf champions

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995254

By Peter Owen

AFTER 20 years, founder and president Graeme Miller has called time on the Invincibles Sunshine Coast Junior Golf Tour – a unique organisation that launched the career of Open champion Cameron Smith and hundreds of other talented Queensland golfers.

“I’m not getting any younger and the workload has become extremely difficult,” said Miller, who is in his 70s. “I’ve reached out to people who I thought might be able to take over, but I couldn’t find anybody with the time or inclination.”

Miller, a former Victorian who ‘retired’ to the Sunshine Coast in 1997, established The Invincibles Tour in 2003, providing coaching, encouragement and guidance, setting up an organised schedule of events and allowing young golfers to reach their potential in a professional and safe environment.

“Our juniors are taught the rules, scoring and etiquette of the game while receiving guidance on the appropriate people skills required for golf and life in general,” Miller said. “We strive to give our members the best opportunity to follow their dreams.”

Graeme Miller calls time on the Invincibles Tour.

One of the earliest members of the tour was Cameron Smith, then a 10-year-old protégé who made the trek up the Bruce Highway from Brisbane for coaching and to compete in Invincibles events. It was at one of the clinics that he met Grant Field, the Pelican Waters-based coach who has mentored the three-time Australian PGA champion ever since.

Other stars to have come through the Invincibles Tour include Australian PGA champion Jed Morgan, tournament professionals Louis Dobbelaar, Cassie Porter, T.J. King, Shae Wools-Cobb, Doug Klein and Charlie Dann, outstanding amateurs Justice Bosio, Blaike Perkins, Tyler Duncan, Rhianna Lewis and Sarah Wilson, and current junior champions Harry Takis, Kate McFarlane and Shyla Singh.

“I take great pride in seeing so many of our members achieve remarkable things on the golf course and, at the same time, develop into outstanding men and women,” Miller said.

Some families even relocated to the Sunshine Coast – one from as far away as Perth – just so their sons and daughters could join the Invincibles Tour, where the emphasis has always been as much on integrity and sportsmanship as developing a sound golf swing.

Miller said the Invincibles had achieved the goals that led to its formation.

“The things we sought to establish for young golfers are there, and set so firmly in place that I have great confidence they will continue long into the future,” he said.

Graeme Miller (right) and the most famous of his Invincibles graduates, Cameron Smith.

Miller said the region’s zone and district golf associations had pledged to set up a new junior tour, based on the Invincibles operation, and provide support and sponsorship for the calendar of events.

“The future for junior golf on the Sunshine Coast is secure and exciting,” Miller said. 

He said the Invincibles would take up a new role – offering scholarships and providing assistance to junior golfers who would most benefit from the support.

“We will be setting up a skilled panel of four members with a broad knowledge and expertise about the running of junior golf in this region and they will vote on who will be the recipients of these scholarships.

“Juniors we will be looking at will be those who display the appropriate people skills and who are focused on achieving their best – on and off the course – while protecting the traditions of the game of golf.”

Miller said he had appreciated the support of Golf Australia, Golf Queensland, the PGA, zone and district associations, his band of sponsors, and the generosity of golf clubs throughout south-east Queensland who made their courses available over the past 20 years. 

The post Invincibles Tour draws curtain on 20 years of developing golf champions first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



https://www.insidegolf.com.au/news/club-news-news/invincibles-tour-draws-curtain-on-20-years-of-developing-golf-champions/
Harry, Kate clean up at Invincibles awards

Harry, Kate clean up at Invincibles awards

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995232

HARRY Takis and Kate McFarlane, the golden couple of Queensland junior golf, had trouble taking home their booty, so many trophies did they collect at this year’s Invincibles Junior Golf Tour presentation night.

Takis, 17, who made a rush trip to Noosa Springs for the function after competing in the Queensland PGA Championship at Nudgee, won awards for Best Individual Performance, Boys Matchplay Champion, Best Team Person, Junior Masters Champion and he took the boys’ Golf Representative Award.

Kate’s awards included Girls Matchplay Champion, Junior Masters Champion, the girls’ Golf Representative Award, and she won the Players Player Award – voted on by other Invincibles members.

It was a well-earned reward for two teenagers who have dominated junior competition in Queensland this year. 

Chase Rendell, a young Tin Can Bay golfer who is just beginning a career that promises much, scored his biggest win when he took the Gold Cup of Cups championship – an event contested by the net winners of all the year’s Invincibles Tour events.

The post Harry, Kate clean up at Invincibles awards first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



https://www.insidegolf.com.au/news/club-news-news/harry-kate-clean-up-at-invincibles-awards/
WANTED: CLUB NEWS STORIES

WANTED: CLUB NEWS STORIES

10/01/2023, Australia, Golf, Golf Australia, Article # 30995277

WHAT is happening at your golf club? Inside Golf and readers of the magazine would love to know.

As Australia’s most-read golfing publication, Inside Golf is always on the lookout for interesting news items that will help promote the game of golf to a wider audience.

If you would like to see your golf club mentioned in the magazine, feel free to contact us. The good news is it won’t cost anything if it appears in our Club News section.

Ideas: You may have a new staff member or club professional you want to tell readers about. Then again your club may have a redesigned golf hole, made improvements to the golf course or clubhouse.

Other news items of interest could be: Unusual incidents, extraordinary feats or scores; aces and albatrosses; age breakers; a club member who is an extraordinary volunteer or a team of dedicated volunteers; junior and women’s news; upcoming events and functions (we need at least a month’s notice on this); grants received and where it will be spent; pro-ams and even funny incidents; committee changes, etc. Don’t forget to send us a photo as well.

They say no news is good news, but for golf clubs that don’t promote their own golf club is, well, bad news.

Who knows, your club may attract new members and more golfers will want to turn up for a social round?

Send your news to david@insidegolf.com.au and he’ll do the rest.

The post WANTED: CLUB NEWS STORIES first appeared on Inside Golf. Australia's Most-Read Golf Magazine as named by Australian Golfers - FREE.



https://www.insidegolf.com.au/news/club-news-news/wanted-club-news-stories/
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