Inside Golf : Inside Golf January 2015
from the ceo www.insidegolf.com.au | January 2015 15 Open draws global praise Stephen Pitt CEO – Golf Australia Brian Thorbur n CEO – PGA of Australia It’s amazing, even to those who’ve seen a lot of them decided, how often the chase for the stonehaven Cup generates amazing storylines. And while many were looking for Adam scott and Rory McIlroy to fight out a second consecutive Emirates Australian Open title, we crowned another world-class player in Jordan spieth. spieth climbed from 14th to 11th in the world rankings after a final round that some experts ranked among the greatest seen in Australian tournament history. His spectacular course-record 63 was not only a round for the ages, but the interest it generated continued to elevate the Emirates Australian Open around the country and on the global stage. spieth was a credit to the family he holds so dear. He was genial, articulate and the huge crowds warmed to a man who − it’s not hard to foresee − should go on to something very special as his career unfolds. And his enthusiasm for being in our country and the Australian Golf Club itself were yet another great advertisement as the tournament grows in stature. It was also encouraging to see the battle for the Open Championship slots to play at st Andrew’s next year with Rod Pampling, Brett Rumford and Greg Chalmers off to scotland. the R&A’s Open Qualifying series has already proven a great fit with our Open and yet another way we’re taking Aussie golf to the world. On that front, we successfully introduced Australian Open Radio that enabled fans around the course to stay up to date with all that was going on around the course. It also streamed live on our official App and on the website, with people around the world reporting to us that they were sensing the atmosphere in our unique broadcast. Channel 7 reported an increase in ratings around Australia – remarkable given their surge in 2013 with that thrilling finale. the Emirates Australian open reached almost 2.7 viewers across the four days with a peak of more than one million for the final round. Dominant free-to-air metro market shares were recorded each day and the four day average of 25.3% made it the most-watched program in its timeslot. Anecdotal reports from Golf Channel viewers overseas lavished praise on the course and its presentation, while spieth’s run again generated significant interest in the United states. the Australian Golf Club was, indeed, a spectacular host. It’s the 18th time the club has hosted the Emirates Australian Open and staff and management took great pride in presenting all facilities in top-notch condition. the course, in tournament mode for the first time since the latest Jack Nicklaus redesign, was in fantastic condition and proved a tough but fair test – exactly what we want for the national championship. All in all, we were delighted with the week. It’s exciting to see the progress made in recent seasons and we are confident we’ll continue to expand on that momentum in years to come. Looking back...and ahead tHEAustralian PGA Championship was an exciting end to the PGA tour of Australasia and OneAsia season. Our strong field of domestic and international talent delivered a week of outstanding competition for fans, while pleasing crowd numbers continued to show the popularity of the tournament after moving to its new home at RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast. An event of this stature would never be achievable without the support of our partners. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Queensland Government, through tourism and Events Queensland, Gold Coast City Council, Gold Coast tourism, RACV Royal Pines Resort, RACV, Emirates, Coca-Cola Amatil, and all our other event partners as well as our broadcast partner Channel 7. Likewise, to all PGA staff, officials, media representatives and volunteers who worked tirelessly to produce and promote this world class event. the Australian PGA Championship would not be possible without our golf fans and I thank you for supporting Australia’s oldest Professional tournament. the end of 2014 also saw a successful finish to the 23rd year of the Holden scramble. With the support of GM Holden, the PGA was able to expand the state Final series of the Women’s Holden scramble into tasmania and south Australia, as a result of increased female participation. the Women’s Holden scramble forms part of the overall Holden scramble event and since its introduction in 2005 has seen over 10,000 women hit the fairways; offering a fantastic opportunity for female golfers across Australia to participate in the Holden scramble. Over 450 local Holden scramble events are held each year at golf clubs all over Australia. to participate in the 2015 Holden scramble, please visit the Holden scramble website www. holdenscramble.com.au for all event information. As we move into the 2015 PGA tour of Australasia season I’m pleased to confirm dates for the 2015 Fiji International. Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course will host the tournament for a second time on the 15 – 18 October; offering one of the most spectacular backdrops ever seen in tournament golf. Feedback from this year’s tournament was hugely positive and I encourage you to keep an eye on the Fiji International website www.fijiinternational.com for player announcements, travel and ticketing information for this unique event. Finally, 2015 will see 100 trainees embark on their career in golf through the PGA Academy. since its inception, the PGA Academy has been producing PGA Professionals who have gone on to forge successful careers in both Vocational and tournament areas. the PGA continues to offer traineeships, tertiary education and performance coaching to PGA Members, tour Professionals and the public, both domestic and international. For more information on our education and training offerings, please visit www.pga.org. au/education.
Inside Golf Dec 14
Inside Golf February 2015