It’s Australian PGA Championship week… and Scotty’s back!

Adam Scott has arrived home early and played golf against his mates for a $10 lotto ticket.

Adam Scott has returned to Australia for the first time since his 2013 Masters victory and he will make his first competitive appearance at the Australian PGA Championship which begins this Thursday at Royal Pines on the Gold Coast.

But Scott has already played a little competitive golf at Royal Pines when he played for a $10 lotto ticket with his Dad and two best mates late last week; as Jim Tucker reported in The Courier-Mail:

A workman at Royal Pines shouted “g’day” and there were double-takes aplenty by fellow golfers as the world No. 2 materialised unexpectedly for a low-key round at the scene of the Australian PGA starting on Thursday.

Scott partnered father Phil, himself a PGA professional, in a laugh-filled 18-hole reconnaissance that came with a serious side – duelling with Scott’s old schoolboy buddies Aaron Nye, the former Queensland cricketer, and Adam King.

“Dad and I cleaned them up. Aaron and Adam are both pretty good golfers but as their careers grow, their golf gets worse,” Scott said with a grin.

“Hopefully I keep getting better and the gap widens. I’ve won a $10 Lotto ticket but they are trying to get out of this with the cheapest QuickPick they can find.”

Scott has made some serious financial sacrifices to come back and play in Australia this summer as Ben Everill pointed out in this great article.

Scott will not play in Asia this year where he can command appearance fees greater than the entire purse of all three Australian tour events he’ll play.

Amongst other events he will miss the World Golf Championships event in China this week, basically free money and world ranking points and also the Nedbank Challenge at Sun City in South Africa in early December where even the last placed player gets 100K.

Luke Elvy also penned a great piece for the Daily Telegraph on Scott’s return to Australia where Scott responds to the financial sacrifices he has made.

“Yeah, I could have made lots more money playing in Asia, but I really want to play in Australia.” Scott said.

“One of the insights into why I’ve done well recently is because I’ve taken money out of every decision I make. I’m back playing for the love of the game.”

The 2013 Australian PGA Championship field will also include fellow Australian Marc Leishman and Aussie Golfer’s favourite American golfer, Brandt Snedeker.

The Australian PGA Championship moved to its new home on the Gold Coast after negotiations with Coolum Resorts new owner Clive Palmer, not surprisingly fell through.

There has been a lot of criticism about the move to the Gold Coast and specifically Royal Pines as it has never been regarded as one of Australia’s best golf courses.

Graham Marsh’s course design team was appointed to redesign the Royal Pines layout which has often criticised as being boring and suffered from poor drainage.

The plan to bring it up to championship standards is a long-term plan but already Marsh and his team have made significant changes and by all reports, the course is in fantastic condition ahead of this week’s event.

We will see and hear more about the course as the week progresses but there is no doubt it is going to be fun with the Gold Coast set to hand Adam Scott the keys to the city, Marc Leishman and Rickie Fowler playing some crazy shots on the beach and fans encouraged to wear green on Friday as a tribute to Scotty.

We’ll add more on all of this in the coming days. Can’t wait!

Network Ten will be broadcasting live from Royal Pines across all four days and you can buy tickets to the tournament via Ticketek.

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