Darren Clarke signed for Coolum

Clarke headed for warmer climes

2011 British Open Champion Darren Clarke has committed to play the Australian PGA Championship at the Hyatt Regency Coolum this November.

The Northern Irishman will probably have finished his celebrations by then and will be lining up with the already announced talent including Greg Norman, Jason Day and Bubba Watson.

Reports are that Clarke will receive an appearance fee of around $250,000 in the $1.5 million event that offers a first prize of $270,000.

But the thought of the cold beer and warm climate was also obviously a lure for a player who secured his Major victory in atrocious conditions in England.

“I have heard great things about Queensland and the course at Coolum so I am looking forward to playing golf in more warm conditions than I am used to and also testing my game on a different style course to that of a links. My family also can’t wait to get to the Sunshine Coast,” Clarke said this week.

Irish golfers are on a roll at the moment but compatriots Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell definitely won’t be added to the Coolum mix.  They’ll be teaming up as a united Ireland team (Northern Ireland and the Republic) at the $6.8 million World Cup in Shanghai in the same week as the PGA.
“Irish golfers are enjoying lots of success of late and hopefully I can continue this trend, my game is in great shape and I look forward to capping off a great year in Australia,” Clarke said.

“Knowing that I could be the first Irishman to win the Australian PGA will be in the back of my mind when I come to play and I hope that I have plenty of fellow Irishman there to cheer me on.”

The 2011 Australian PGA Championship will be played from

November 24-27.

Tickets for the event will be on sale shortly and travel packages are available by contacting the PGA of Australia’s Official Travel Partner, Flight Centre on 1300 778 433.

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