2011 British Open: Top 5 Aussie chances

We Aussie golf fans have an extra spring in our step as we head towards the third major of the year in high spirits after some great results by Jason Day at the US Open and US Masters.

The Open Championship is being held at Royal St.George’s Golf Club in Sandwich, England this week and can we expect another good performance from Day and the rest of the Aussies?

Twelve Australians are in the field for The Open Championship including Bryden MacPherson who became only the second Australian to win the Amateur Championship just a month ago. At age 20, it is a dream come true for MacPherson. But with a name like that, perhaps a Scottish golf course is more to his liking.
Let’s take a look at the Top-5 Australian chances at this week’s Open Championship.
Jason Day
Although overshadowed by Rory McIlroy at the US Open, Day is still playing some wonderful golf. He’s got great temperament for someone so young and can nut out good rounds even when he’s not playing so well.

My only concern about Day would be his preparation. He is playing the John Deere Classic on the PGA Tour this week. It is a target golf tournament that hands out birdies to anyone who simply looks like they are trying hard. Steve Stricker won last year with a score of 26-under par. Conversely, when The Open was last played at St.George’s in 2003, Ben Curtis won with a winning score of 1-under par.

Robert Allenby
Allenby didn’t play well at the US Open and missed the cut, but he is showing some signs that his golf game is improving. He scored a 13th the week before the US Open and finished well for a 6th placing last week. St.George’s should suit Allenby, but it’s hard to know which Allenby will turn up.
Richard Green
If anyone saw Dicky Green’s total meltdown in the third round on the European Tour last week, you would question why he’s on this list. It was horrible to watch, and the eventual quadruple bogey took him 35 minutes to complete with more drops than a leaky tap.
I’m going to back him though. He finished seven shots behind the leg-breaking winner and links golf should suit him in the right frame of mind.

Adam Scott
Scott’s US Open was poor, but a third placing last week is a sign that maybe he is getting used to having Steve Williams on the bag. If anyone knows how to prepare for a British Open it is Williams and imagining Adam Scott in contention on Sunday is not so crazy.
Geoff Ogilvy
I don’t have much confidence in Geoff Ogilvy right now and he feels the same about his golf game. It is patchy at best but he sneaks in as our fifth best chance based purely on his experience in big golf tournaments.

+1 Brad Kennedy
Kennedy has earned his first major appearance courtesy of the fifth place finish on the Japan Tour a couple of weeks ago. He has shown he can play well on tough golf courses when he holds his concentration and may surprise at St.George’s.

The 12 Australians playing in the 2011 British Open
Robert Allenby, Jason Day, Aaron Baddeley, Richard Green, Nathan Green, Brad Kennedy, Rick Kulacz, Brydan MacPherson (A), Matthew Millar, Geoff Ogilvy, Adam Scott, Kurt Barnes

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