Brendan Jones with one of his two Token Homemate trophies – photo Japan Golf Tour
The Japan Golf Tour’s domestic season gets underway in Nagoya this week when the traditional season opening Token Homemate Cup is played the Token Tado Country Club.
Five Australians are currently entered to play the event headed by 15 time Japan Tour winner, Brendan Jones, who will be joined by Anthony Quayle, Matthew Griffin, Andrew Evans and Adam Bland.
Jones has won the event on two previous occasions in fact the event has proven a happy hunting ground for Australasians, perhaps the early season timing of the event providing an advantage for those that have typically come off events in Australasia to have them better prepared than others.
Since its inception in 1993, Craig Warren, Andre Stolz, Wayne Perske, Jones (twice) and New Zealand’s Michael Hendry, have won the event.
It has been more than two years since Jones last played an event on the Japan Tour, the impact of Covid playing its role in precluding one of the most successful foreign golfer in modern Japan Tour history to participate on a tour where he has accumulated nearly $A12 million in career earnings.
Jones last victory in Japan came in this every event in early 2019 but he also won in 2012.
The 47-year-old has competed sparingly since last playing on the Japan Tour, instead assisting a friend in a landscaping business in Canberra while awaiting the opportunity to return to the Japan Tour.
A month ago however Jones returned to the tournament scene with an impressive runner-up finish to Jarryd Felton at an Australasian Tour event in Sydney and so he heads to Japan with at least some competitive golf behind him.
Anthony Quayle has yet to win on the Japan Tour but he has performed with distinction including when runner-up in his rookie Japan Tour season at the prestigious Crowns Tournament in 2018.
The now Gold Coast based Northern Territorian, won the Queensland PGA Championship recently to go with his earlier Queensland Open and is expected to build on an impressive start to his professional career.
Matthew Griffin has also yet to win in Japan but there have been numerous top five finishes and a best of runner-up in this very event in early 2019.
Adam Bland has won in Japan and there have been several other top five finishes since first joining the tour in 2014. His win in the Japan PGA Championship in 2015 is likely the highlight of the 39 year old’s career to date.
Andrew Evans has played the Japan Tour previously but regained full playing rights when winning the Japan Tour School late last year. He has won twice on the PGA Tour of Australasia over the last twelve months including a recent win at the TPS Murray River.
New Zealand’s Michael Hendry was entered but has been struck down with Covid and cannot travel at present.
The 25 event domestic season in Japan continues through to the Japan Series event in December.