Victorian Todd Sinnott takes his place in the Token Homemate Cup having earned full playing status with his win at the co-sanctioned Myanmar Open in January.
The long-hitting former amateur standout is motivated by the opportunity to play what he describes as the world’s third strongest tour but there is something else high on his priority list this week also and it has little to do with golf.
“Japanese food is my favourite cuisine,” the 25-year-old told iSeekGolf before jetting out for his debut in the Land of the Rising Sun.
“I’ve never been there and it is one country that I really have always wanted to go to.”
2017 has been a whirlwind year for Sinnott who possesses one of the most powerful actions in the game.
His prodigious hitting is the equal of almost any in the professional ranks though since turning professional at the start of 2015, he has been unable to show it off internationally as he struggled to find a regular tour to play on outside Australia.
That all changed in January, though, when Sinnott shot an impressive 28-under-par for 72 holes at the Asian Tour Q-School to finish tied atop the leaderboard with fellow Victorian Richard Green.
Green won the ensuing playoff but the confidence Sinnott gained from that performance paid big dividends just two weeks later.
His debut at the Singapore Open netted a T26 result but things weren’t going so well early on the following week in Myanmar.
“The first two rounds, I was playing well but I just hit six balls in the water,” he said matter-of-factly.
“Really, I was outside the cut line with eight holes to go but I managed to make a couple of birdies and an eagle coming in to make sure I was playing the weekend.”
What followed was two days of remarkable golf on a demanding course which ended with Sinnott holding the trophy, his first professional victory at any level.
Weekend scores of 64-65 moved him to 14-under and a three-shot win including an impressive birdie at the par-5 72nd hole where he laid up off the tee with a 3-iron.
“There was a leaderboard directly behind the 17th green and I made sure I had a good look at it as I walked off there,” he said.
“I knew I was in front but I didn’t know how many I was in front by.
“I did the maths walking to the 18th tee to figure out if the guys behind me make a birdie, what do I have to make and I knew a six would basically get it done.
“It’s a tough tee shot with water both sides so I hit 3-iron off the tee then laid it up. I was extremely nervous, obviously, and it was just kind of get it in play, get it in the house and get the win.”
The tactic worked, a superb birdie at the last handing him a three-shot win and a cheque for US$135,000 but, more importantly, two valuable opportunities.
With the Myanmar Open co-sanctioned by the Japan Golf Tour, the victory means Sinnott now has full playing privileges in both Asia and Japan for the best part of three years.
For a professional golfer, particularly one just starting his career, that security of tenure is crucial to being able to develop their game.
“It’s nice to get the Myanmar win and get the whole of this year and two more years after that on both the Japan and Asian Tours,” he said.
“I know the Japanese tour is a really good one. It’s probably the third strongest tour in the world, so it's very nice to get that and now I can pick a schedule and play that schedule.
“It’s just nice to be a little organised now.”
One of the most important aspects of professional golf is scheduling and every player is different.
What works for Rory McIlroy may not work for Adam Scott and all top players will say part of the trick to playing their best is to find the right balance between playing and weeks off.
For Sinnott, that process can now begin.
“I’m still trying to work out what works for me schedule-wise because I haven’t had the opportunity to do that yet,” he said.
“I know I was really tired in Myanmar, though, that was just after two pretty mentally demanding weeks.
“Q-School week is pretty draining just because of what you’re playing for, then, when you get your card, your head goes into a little bit of a spin to be honest.
“But having the chance now to work out what works best for me in terms of schedules and courses is a huge opportunity and I’m really looking forward to it.”
Like most, Sinnott’s ultimate goal is to play the PGA Tour and he knows that his maiden victory is a big step in the right direction.
He now has guaranteed starts at several events co-sanctioned between the Asian and European Tours and is also able to improve his world ranking playing in Japan.
“The goal is to get to the PGA Tour and I’m going to do everything I can to progress there,” he said.
“Realistically, the best way there now is through the world rankings by trying to get in the top 50 and then take advantage of some of the big opportunities you get presented with over in America because of that.
“The Asian Tour have a lot of co-sanctioned events with Europe so I’ll probably play somewhere between seven and 15 events on the European tour in the next 12 months.
“And then with Japan, I know Australians have had a lot of success up there and Brendan Jones has qualified for the WGC-Match Play and a couple of other WGC events based on his world ranking from playing there.
“So, I see a lot of opportunities in the next couple of years to get where I want to go.”
While Sinnott’s professional journey officially began with the decision to join the pay-for-play ranks back in 2015, in many ways, it really starts now.
Armed with all the tools necessary to mix it with the very best in the world, his win in Myanmar has opened up a whole new world of opportunity, one he intends to work hard to take advantage of.
“I’m not one to sit back and let it happen,” he says. “I’m going to try to make it happen.
“I work hard and I’m pretty driven to get where I want to go.
“But it’s the journey that makes it rewarding and I’m enjoying that as well.”
It’s the ideal attitude to go with an impressive game and is just part of the reason we will likely see Sinnott performing on the game’s biggest stages sooner than later.
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