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Australians Brace For European Golf Examination

The 2015 Australian PGA Champion Holman is back to the drawing board (Photo: Bruce Young)
A marathon test awaits 10 Australians and one New Zealander at the European Tour’s Final Stage of Qualifying with a precious European Tour card given to those who survive the examination which begins on Saturday.

The Lumine Golf and Beach Golf Club’s Lakes and Hills layouts in Tarragona in Spain will see 154 hopefuls begin the arduous 108 holes of qualifying to determine who has the right to play the European Tour in 2018, some who have been there before and others looking to play in Europe for the first time.

Adam Blyth, Nick Cullen, Matthew Giles, Richard Green, Ashley Hall, Nathan Holman, Matthew Millar, Jack Munro, Dimi Papadatos and Todd Sinnott will be joined by New Zealander Josh Geary as they each chase one of the cards handed out on November 16th to the leading 25 golfers and ties.

Some have made it into the field via the first two stages of qualifying while others were required to survive only Stage Two, the remainder gaining access to the Final Stage via career credentials or performances on golf tours around the world over the last year.

Given the numbers game involved, the task they face is a formidable one although it is arguably the fairest and most egalitarian way of determining who has the right to play for the riches of the European Tour.

Not that securing a card is any guarantee to golfing stardom, however. Only three of the 30 who secured their cards 12 months ago were able to retain their playing rights for next year.

Unless a player can perform quickly there is also the added complication of only a limited amount of starts in 2018 in which to consolidate the success they have this week.

For those slipping a freshly acquired tour card into the back pocket, the task will have only just begun.

Not that the players involved this week will be thinking too much of those issues at present.

Rather, they will be keen just to get to the second biggest men's golfing stage on the planet and to hopefully forge a successful career.    

ADAM BLYTH  - 2016 NSW OPEN WIN

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