PETER SENIOR withdrew after just six holes in the second round of the Australian Open at Royal Sydney today saying it was his last round of professional golf.
The 57 year old hit a drive on his seventh hole but didn’t continue saying a hip injury sustained in last week’s NSW Open was the last straw and would bring to an end his illustrious career.
“It’s a tough pill to swallow,” the two time Australian Open winner said. “The last two years, I’ve had that many injuries. I’m just sick of it. It’s a game you can’t play with injuries. I’ve had a great run, a great career. I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. People have been fantastic, you just can’t play like that. I don’t enjoy playing like this. I can’t hit a shot. Every time I hit the ball I get a bolt of pain through my hip.”
Senior had previously foreshadowed that 2016 would be his last year on the US Champions Tour but suggested he may continue to play the big Australian events if he remained competitive. He had also suggested he was continue to play occasional Australian Legends Tour events.
That intention is now unclear with the holder of 34 titles around the world saying he had had enough.
Senior was due to play the Australian Senior PGA Championship on the NSW south coast next week and was expected to have a big career swansong at the Australian PGA Championship in his home state of Queensland in a fortnight.
After hitting his tee shot on the 16th today Senior took a cart back to the clubhouse, hugged his wife June and was clearly emotional.
“I did my hip last week at the NSW Open on the Monday. I battled through the tournament last week, didn’t do much practice on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, played the pro-am,” he said after taking a kart back to the clubhouse from the 16th fairway.
“Yesterday I played the pro-am but not today, it’s just horrendous. I can’t hit a golf shot out there. It’s no good me being out there annoying the other guys because they’re playing pretty well so this is it for me. I’m not playing any more golf.”
Senior’s 23 wins on the PGA Tour of Australasia have included the unprecedented feat of winning Australia’s big three tournaments since he turned 50. He won the Australian PGA Championship in 2010, the Australian Open in 2012 and the Australian Masters in 2015, at 56 the oldest ever winner of the event by far.
He named his win at the 2012 Australian Open at The Lakes in Sydney with his son on his bag as his career highlight.
Turning Professional in 1978 Senior is the only player in PGA Tour of Australasia history to have won in five different decades; 1970’s, 1980’s, 1990’s, 2000’s, 2010’s.
For all his accolades, Senior said the fondest memories from his career will be of the people he has met along the way.
“The golf’s fantastic no matter where we play. It’s the people surrounding the golf who have been fantastic,” Senior said.
Senior was already set to be honoured by the Australian Golf Writers Association at their annual dinner in Sydney on Saturday night at what will now be a very emotional occasion.
Peter Senior Quits Golf at Royal Sydney: Video