Victorian Opens continue novel concept

The Men's and Women's Victorian Opens will be played this week at the 13th Beach Golf Links on the Bellarine Peninsula of Victoria with the unique and successful concept adopted last year being played once again.

That concept involved both events being played simultaneously although this year the one venue will be used all week compared to last year when the opening round of the Women's event was played at the Woodlands Golf Club before they joined the men at Spring Valley for the final 36 holes.

This year the Women will play over 72 holes bringing the event fully into line with the Tier 2 Victorian Men's Open although over the opening two rounds the Women will play the Creek Course at 13th Beach and then join the Men at the Beach Course at that same venue over the weekend.

Tee times will be alternated over the closing 36 holes in order that fans will get to see both events played simultaneously.

Many of those who played last week's Queensland PGA Championship will tee it up in the Men's event although the winner and runner-up in Toowoomba, Brad Kennedy and Michael Hendry are not in the field.

PGA Championship winner, Daniel Popovic, European Tour winners, Richard Green, Scott Strange, Peter O'Malley and Mark Brown are some of the feature players in the men's field while in the Women's line-up Laura Davies, Stacey Keating, Sarah Jane Smith, Lee-Anne Pace and Nikki Campbell are amongst the leading names in the women's field.

Leading amateurs include Cameron Smith, Brady Watt, Lucas Herbert, Ryan Ruffles, Brett Drewitt and Geoff Drakeford amongst the men while in the women Su Hyun Oh will look to carry on with her recent form which has seen her finish runner-up at the Volvik Ladies Masters and make the cut at the Australian Women's Open.

The winners of the events last year were Scott Arnold and Germany's Joanna Klatten although neither are in this week's field, Arnold currently in South Africa and Klatten, who missed the cut last week in Canberra, is attending her brother's wedding in Singapore

Both tournaments carry prize-money of A$150,000 making the men's event the richest purse in the history of Tier 2 events in the country.

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