AUSTRALIA’S Andre Stolz is gunning for another OneAsia win after taking home the Indonesia PGA Championship title on the Tour’s season-opening event last month.
Stolz continues his comeback this year after having battled a career-threatening wrist injury from 2005, and is looking forward to playing against the region’s leading players from OneAsia as well as the best of the European Tour at the US$3 million Volvo China Open this week.
“I am looking forward to a big year. I’ve come back with a different attitude to golf after my injury and I enjoy it more now instead of putting too much pressure on myself,” said Stolz. “I want to go out and have fun and work hard, and win more tournaments this year.”
The 40-year-old had his confidence boosted last month in Jakarta when he took home the winner’s cheque of US$180,000.
“I have been playing well for quite a while now. To finally win after all the hard work put in… That’s the biggest thing and I feel happy to finally have been able to do that.”
Having played the 2010 Luxehills Chengdu Open, OneAsia’s season-opener last year, Stolz is also eager to return to a familiar venue at Luxehills International Country Club from April 21-24.
“I was playing pretty good at Luxehills on the first day last year but it got very cold on the second day and I struggled to adapt so I ended up missing the cut by one or two shots,” he recalled.
“I really liked the course though and it’s a course I can see myself winning on. I’m just happy I will be there one month later than last year so hopefully the weather will be better. I’ve been checking on the temperature in Chengdu every day!”
Stolz hopes to live out one of his life’s dreams next week, by taking home the title on the European co-sanctioned event.
“One of my goals as a young professional was to win on every tour in the world. I’ve actually won on pretty much every Tour in the world now, except for the European Tour. So if I win next week, that will finish off my list. I’m very excited about that.”
Stolz, along with compatriots Kim Felton and Scott Strange, will lead the Australian challenge in Chengdu next week.
Triple Major Champion Padriag Harrington and Spanish star Sergio Garcia will both join the contenders in the Volvo China Open.
Other OneAsia winners from last season, China’s Liang Wenchong, Kiwi Michael Hendry, defending champion Y.E. Yang and Kim Dae-hyun of Korea, also feature in a strong line-up.
The 2011 Volvo China Open is being telecast in Australian on One HD.