IN A MAJOR coup, Greg Norman has agreed to play in the next three Australian Open championships in Sydney.
Australia’s greatest ever golfer will head the field in the 2009 Australian Open to be played at the NSW Golf Club at La Perouse from December 3 to 6.
The 54 year old can expect to draw huge galleries to the event and the move will go some way to answering the signing of Tiger Woods for the Australian Masters in Melbourne. But both appearances will mean a big boost for the public profile for golf in Australia.
Norman, a five-time winner of the Australian Open Stonehaven Cup, has a well known love affair with the spectacular NSW Golf Club links course.
The course was recently ranked as the number one in Australia and is the only non-British course in the World’s Top 10 golf courses outside the USA. (As ranked by US Golf Digest)
Norman has committed to play the next three Australian Open Championships held in Sydney with the 2010 Championship set down for the re-modelled layout at The Lakes.
“I look forward to returning to Sydney to play the AO this December,” Norman said.
“I’m particularly pleased that Golf Australia have selected the NSW Golf Club as the venue. Not only is the venue a favourite amongst the players it will provide an excellent backdrop for showcasing Sydney and NSW as an extraordinary golf destination.” he said.
Norman has also been announced as anambassador for Tourism NSW by the NSW Government
NSW Premier Nathan Rees said: “Greg has won more tournaments in Sydney than any other city in the world. No Australian sportsman is held in higher regard internationally and he will bring tens of thousands of spectators through the gates over the four days of the Championship.”
Norman and wife Chris Evert were in Sydney for the announcement following a few days in Melbourne giving support to victims of the Black Saturday bushfires.