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EXCLUSIVE: Jarrod Lyle on his return to golf

IN HIS first exclusive column, Jarrod Lyle talks about preparing to return to professional golf following his second all-clear from leukaemia.

HI EVERYONE, this is Jarrod Lyle. I’ll be writing an exclusive column for the new Golf Link website. I’m very excited to be writing about my return to the game, my thoughts on what’s happening in golf and my life away from the fairways.

On the health front, things are going very well. My doctor is very pleased with my progress and now it’s all about staying healthy and happy. I still have regular check-ups in the hospital every three months but I have had no major issues to get the doctors excited!

Things are definitely heating up for the Aussie summer and everybody is looking forward to seeing Adam Scott playing on home soil. 

I have to admit I was very hurt recently when Jason Day committed to play the world cup with Adam Scott – I thought that I would have been a chance to team up with him!  After all, I have played in eight Saturday comps at The Sands and won a few TattsLotto tickets off the guys out there, so clearly I’m in form. Obviously I didn’t get in quick enough!

I will be joining Scotty and Matt Kuchar for the Australian Masters at Royal Melbourne starting November 14th. I didn’t think I would ever get to play again following my second battle with leukaemia, but I can’t wait to get back out on the course after 20 months on the sidelines.Now it’s a fortnight away, the nerves are jumping. Hopefully I will be challenging come Sunday afternoon, but being realistic, it would be a huge achievement just to make the cut and play over the weekend. That in itself will be a huge achievement.

I have told all my friends and family to come on Thursday and Friday so that they can see me play for at least 36 holes. It's going to be a busy week and a very emotional week for my wife and I, but it’s exciting at the same time. Just to get back to playing again at professional level is a big step forward, but to make the cut would be a dream. So now it's time to get my game right and ready for the Masters. 

I am steadily increasing my training schedule to improve my golfing fitness as we gear up to The Masters. Recently, I competed in a four-day challenge against eight lady members from my local club, The Sands Torquay. From Thursday to Sunday, I went up against a different pair, playing a two-ball ambrose.

The first day was very rough day weather-wise and unfortunately had to be abandoned. Hail, rain and 70 kilometre per hour winds meant it was too tough and no fun for all involved.

The next three rounds were great for my golf and fitness, but my confidence is shot because the ladies annihilated me. I will not post the scores, because I’m too embarrassed! I felt I played pretty solid, but the ladies combined too well. 

However, I will take confidence from the fact that I fared better against the men when I played against them in September, recording a surprising 16-shot victory with rounds of 70-71-72-72. That was the first time I had walked 72 holes of golf since the Mexican Open in February 2012.

Good luck to all of you playing golf this weekend, I hope your shots go long and straight and your putts drop. 

Here’s a tip to take to the course: all putts break towards the hole!

Jarrod Lyle

Jarrod Lyle is the professional ambassador for the 2013 Golf Link Race to Bonville, which is supporting the Challenge charity, helping relieve the pressure for children and families living with cancer. To make a donation, please visit the Challenge website.

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