Tour News

Senior now amongst favourites at Coolum

(Photo: Bruce Young)
A typically candid and self effacing Peter Senior was first up amongst the pre tournament press at the Palmer Coolum Resort today.

Senior is a two time champion at Sunshine Coast layout having won in 2003 and again in 2010 when he defeated Geoff Ogilvy in a playoff on Monday morning for the title.

Although hounded by a string of interview requests over the past day or so Senior was again happy to talk about last Sunday and his historic personal and golfing milestone.

"Well I have had a little bit of time to reflect on what might have happened," said Senior. "You know we were so close to calling the day off and I might have finished third and John Senden might have been sitting here. A lot of things went my way on Sunday and I am very appreciative of that."

"It is just one of those things where golf rears some unlikely winners sometimes, I always take heart with watching Tom Watson nearly winning the British Open when he was 60 years of age against probably the best field in the world, so there is no real age limit to winning golf tournaments. We are lucky that we live and play a long life sport and I am looking forward to the next couple of seasons."

Asked when the last time was he had hit the ball so well Senior responded. "I played pretty ordinary on Thursday and Friday, I got it up and down pretty well, Saturday I played a little bit better but Sunday I felt like I was in control of it.

"Even though I came up short on a lot of holes, it was very hard to judge which way the wind was coming and I think everybody had trouble with that. The most pleasing thing was how I felt coming down the stretch, we are always looking at ourselves coming down the stretch under a little bit of pressure and how we react and what we do and I was very pleased with the way I performed coming down the home stretch.

Senior was a little reluctant to consider himself a good bet this week when asked. "I don't know about that, I think you better keep it (money) in your pockets, lightning doesn't strike in the same place twice."

"Coolum has been a good hunting ground for me and I have played pretty well here over the last few years, won twice around here. It is a course that the longer hitters don't have that great an advantage it is more placement and if I can putt as well as I did last week so who knows."

The response that got the most laughs was when Senior was asked if he would be distracted by Jeff the dinosaur. "No it doesn't worry me as long as it doesn't crap anywhere we'll be right."

The conversation then turned to the future of the tournament and when it may be held including the possibility of it being on the Gold Coast where of course Senior resides.

"I've heard some rumours, nothing is concrete as yet, would be nice to have it on the Gold Coast we haven't had a tournament there for such a long time. Facilities down there we have good resort courses, not great golf courses to play golf but we have some really, really good resort courses and I think they will come up trumps.

"I have heard a few clubs being mentioned so you never know that is up to the powers to be to sort out what is the best for the players and the tournament sponsors.

"I think that if it is not on the north coast then it should be on the Gold Coast, gives the guys an opportunity to get together and have the same atmosphere we have had here for the last few years. Plenty to do at the Gold Coast at night time, if we played it in Brisbane it would be sort of all over the place, I know a few courses around the Airport have been mentioned, I think you have to have some night time activity the young guys like to sort of manoeuvre out every now and again and do some things."

As to whether he feels any pressure this week Senior was quite relaxed with his response. "No, none what so ever. It is great to have won last week but I really look forward to playing the next week. It is a great way to finish, great to have my son on the bag for our first win and he was over the moon, he was almost speechless on Sunday and he's still not getting over the comment of the 1%. I've had a lot of people ring me up and ask to be his manager so I don't know how we'll go there."

The question as to how well Senior is playing compared to when he was in his prime was asked. I'm probably hitting it more consistently than I did in the late 80's early 90's when I had a good stretch of tournaments there, definitely more consistent than I have ever been and you know I have to thank Gary Edwin for that, we have worked pretty hard on certain areas.

"He has just made my golf a little more long term now. 1997 I went to Gary and I was almost ready to give the game away I was playing that badly, we worked a bit on it and turned it around and you know I still go back into the old habits but as long as Gary and with modern technology now he's only a phone call away and it's great.

"You can Skype and you can get back hit a couple of bad shots on the range and he can be back in Australia here and send me the results. He has been fantastic, I owe a lot to him and his son Luke he watches over my short game.

Senior continues to amaze with his longevity in the game and his capacity to defeat at home those who are perceived as significantly better players. This week he could do so again around a golf course that appears to suit his eye.

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