The 13th Beach golfing facility on the Bellarine Peninsula – photo PGA of Australia

The Vic Open has become one of the mainstays of the PGA Tour of Australasia in recent years, the event now considered one of the most popular on the Australasian professional golfing scene for both men and women.

That the event is attractive to both genders is a reflection on a decision made several years ago to stage both the women’s and men’s Victorian Open concurrently at the one venue and the concept has proven to be a winner.

The complications surrounding Covid 19 have impacted the event to the point that it is now no longer a European or LPGA Tour event as it had been in recent years but with Hannah Green, Su Oh, Stephanie Kyraciou and Karis Davidson in the women’s field the LPGA Tour is well represented.

The men might not boast any current DP World (European Tour) representatives as such, but with the likes of recent winners, Anthony Quayle, Jed Morgan, Todd Sinnott, the consistent Brad Kennedy and Louis Dobbelaar and in form Andrew Dodt in the field, there is plenty of interest in an event that carries $410,000 for either event.

Green will play her first event of 2022 and will start as the favourite in the women’s field although recent WPGA winner in Brisbane, Su Oh, who finished midfield in Florida last week and who must be congratulated for rushing back for her home state open is likely to give Green plenty to think about.

Kyriacou was unable to play the WPGA Championship in Brisbane due to Covid but her season on the Ladies European Tour last year where she finished 3rd on that order of Merit set her up to gain LPGA Tour status in 2022. 

Adding further to the appeal of the men’s event is that three Open Championship starts are up for grabs to the leading three players this week and not otherwise exempt for the 2022 Open Championship. With the cancellation of the New Zealand Open due to Covid restrictions, those exemptions were transferred to the Vic Open.

Can the field’s highest ranked male player Jed Morgan reproduce his stunning Aust PGA form – photo Bruce Young

Amongst the men, Morgan, Kennedy, Dobbelaar, Dodt and Travis Smyth have also made a rushed trip back to Victoria after playing in Saudi Arabia last week, Kennedy finishing 14th in that lucrative event, but Dobbelaar and Dodt also had good week’s, Dobbelaar continuing an impressive start to his professional career which began only a couple of months ago.

Quayle finished 6th at the Australian PGA Championship, then won the Queensland Open before finishing runner-up at the TPS Victoria last week so there is no doubting his current form and he might do well again.

The Creek and Ocean Courses at 13th Beach on the Bellarine Peninsula plays host to the event, the extra capacity of 36 holes allowing 142 men and 72 women to tee it up over the opening two days.

Recent WPGA winner Su Oh back from Florida to play her State Open – Bruce Young