The Frequent Flying Life of the Tour Pro

No sooner was it over than it is on again for Terry Pilkadaris. (Photo: Photosport)
Not that fans should feel too sorry for players good enough to be playing this week’s Hero Indian Open or the Web.Com Tour event in Mexico but spare a thought for the travelling schedule of some of the Australasians competing.

Just a few days after playing in the New Zealand Open near Queenstown, Scott Hend, Andrew Dodt, Marcus Fraser and the event’s runner-up, Terry Pilkadaris, find themselves almost halfway across the planet in New Delhi for an event jointly sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours.

For others such as Tim Wilkinson, Rhein Gibson and Jamie Arnold, all of whom made the cut and played all four days in Queenstown, they headed in the other direction to play in the El Bosque Mexico Championship - the 5th event of the 2018 Web.Com Tour schedule.

Gibson played well enough in Queenstown but after a fast start to the Web.Com Tour season with 3rd place finishes in both events in the Bahamas he has slipped a few spots to 7th on the money list and will no doubt be keen to regain that earlier form.   

For Hend, it continues a hectic travel schedule which saw him make the cut but finish well back two weeks earlier at the Qatar Masters, then jump on a plane and head for New Zealand only to find when he got there his clubs had gone missing. They eventually did turn up but he would miss the cut at the New Zealand Open.

The misfortune was like water off a duck’s back to Hend, however, who has developed a reputation as one of the most widely travelled golfers in the game and the vagaries of quick turnarounds and international travel are commonplace to the Florida-based Queenslander.

Hend has a reputation as a heavy traveller.

After doing a little guest commentary in New Zealand and enjoying the hospitality of the New Zealand Open and the adventure playground that is Queenstown, Hend headed north west to India.

Dodt and Fraser did made the cut in Queenstown but it will be Pilkadaris who may garner more interest this week after his near miss at Millbrook Resort.

Pilkadaris has a reputation the equal of Hend in terms of travelling widely to events, almost on the basis of ‘have start, will travel'.

The New Zealand Open offered the golfers mentioned above the chance to improve their status on both the Australasian and Asian Tours and for Pilkadaris - who finished runner-up to winner Daniel Nisbet despite a 25-under total - worldwide television exposure that he has seldom enjoyed previously.

As to how all follow up in their respective events this week remains to be seen but their lengthy journeys to do so are reflective of the adjustments they must regularly make to compete with success internationally.






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