Hendry and Canizares set a blistering pace in Perth
Published: Oct 18, 2012 11:18:21 PM Updated: Mar 27, 2013 11:36:45 AM
New Zealand’s Michael Hendry and Spain’s Alejandro Canizares set a blistering pace at the ISPS HANDA Perth International today at Lake Karrinyup Country Club.
Australia’s richest tournament, with a prize purse of USD$2million, got underway in perfect morning conditions, and Hendry and Canizares capitalised - shooting 7-under the card.
A regular on the PGA Tour of Australasia, Hendry is relishing playing at LakeKarrinyup Country Club for the first time and rediscovering some form that went missing over the winter.
“I have never played this golf course before, the first time a round was on Tuesday and I played pretty well and again in the pro-am, so hopefully I can keep it up,” said Hendry, who won the NZ PGA Championship earlier in 2012.
“My form had been a bit rough but saw a few glimpses last week in China so it’s just nice to carry on.
“When you're playing bad and you're spending lots of money to get to events and not getting a lot of return on that investment sometimes, it does put a lot of pressure on you to play well.
“But you just keep working hard and hoping it turns the corner at some stage, and it has the last couple of weeks,” added Hendry.
Despite the blistering pace he set in the first round, Hendry is acutely aware thatthere is a lot more golf to be played with plenty of big name stars lurkingbehind him on the leaderboard.
“If you're going to play good golf, you're going to have a lot of opportunitiesaround this golf course. Luckily enough, I capitalised on them today.??
“It’s one round out of four, 54 holes to go, a lot of golf, a lot of birdies and bogeys to be had yet.”
Less familiar with Australia is European Tour player Alejandro Canizares but he is impressed with Lake Karrinyup Country Club and Perth.
“It's a really nice track. The greens are firm and they have a lot of slopes so they are not easy. It wasn't as windy today as it was yesterday and the daybefore, so it was playing a little easier. But I really liked it,” said Canizares who has competed on the European Tour since 2006.
The 29-year-old said he needed a good finish to make it to the Race to Dubai with only the top 60 in the tour making the trip to Jumeirah Golf Estates at the end of November.
“I’m 70th at the moment so this is either my last or my second to last tournament of the year,” he said.
“I need a good finish – if I win it will fix a lot of things.”
Finishing a shot back from Hendry and Canizares with a 6-under 66 was 20-year-old Argentinean Professional Emiliano Grillo.
“It was a good round overall. There are not many tournaments left, so I am trying to make as much ground as I can this week,” Grillo said.
Paul Casey was the best of the big name players at the end of the first round, shooting a 5-under 67 to be tied fourth with fellow Englishman Andrew Johnston.??Coming back from a shoulder injury sustained during a snowboarding accident, Casey was delighted with his opening round.
“I played wonderful golf today, really happy with 67, I thought the golf course would be trickier this afternoon,” said Casey.
“Greens certainly got a little crispy and I struggled to reach a couple of putts, but tee?to?green was beautiful and ecstatic with the number of birdie chances I had, yeah, chuffed to be sitting at 67.”
Of the 15 West Australians in the field, four time PGA Tour of Australasia champion Greg Chalmers and 23-year old Jason Scrivener are highest on the leaderboard at 4-under the card. Chalmers, who is feeling his age on the range has been very impressed by Scrivener and believes it could be the week for one of the up and comers in the field to breakthrough.
“All I know is when I was on the range, I was the oldest by about 15 years. I think there are a lot of young guys who are going to pop up in the future,” said Chalmers.
“Jason Scrivener, I played with about six years ago, and I thought, wow, this guy is going to do something great, I remember when I played with him, I thought he was fantastic.
“I see a lot of young faces that I haven't seen before, and it's probably due for someone who you have not seen before to have a great week.”
Also at 4-under the card are Australians Ashley Hall, Max McCardle and Andrew Dodt as well as Welshman Rhys Davies.
The ISPS HANDA Perth International is owned and promoted by IMG and is the collective vision of Eventscorp, a division of Tourism Western Australia, and IMG to see a major international golf event played annually in Perth.
The International Sports Promotion Society, ISPS, is the title sponsor of the inaugural event. The ISPS HANDA Perth International is co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia and the European Tour and the only event in Australia co-sanctioned with the European Tour and will be broadcasted globally via European Tour Television for over 800 hours showcasing Perth and Western Australia to 400 million homes in 67 countries.
Tickets are available from the Main Gate. For transport and access information and further information please visit the event website www.perthinternational.com. Follow the ISPS HANDA Perth International on Facebookwww.facebook.com/PerthInternationalGolf and Twitter @PerthIntl