27th – 29th October, 2023, Thurgoona Country Club

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No Merit, No Worries for confident Stolz

Andre Stolz Tees off in the NSW Seniopr Open Pro-AM

PGA Legends Tour Order of Merit Leader Andre Stolz insists the hunt for the 2023 title isn’t his goal for the year, claiming his focus is on the run of major events between now and December.

“The Order-of-Merit has never been my focus from day one. If I were chasing the title, I would play every event,” Stolz said.

“We are approaching peak season with a steady run of events, and there are a couple of big ones like this week (at Thurgoona) and up at Richmond, plus a few more towards the end of the year in Sydney.”

Stolz said he preferred to set his schedule around places he enjoyed competing at.

“If the place looks after you and you can have a good time, then they are the ones I choose to play. Plus, as you get older, you need a rest,” he grinned.

With 2022 champion Richard Green unable to defend his crown, Stolz is one of a clutch of players who can lift the Senior Open Crown this week at Thurgoona. He said several players stood out as big chances to lift the cup on Sunday.

“Any of the young blokes who have just turned 50 could win,” he mused. “Steve Allen and I go back a long way; we’ve probably played a million rounds over the years, and he would have been working hard on his game.”

“Then there’s the Peters (Senior, Lonard & O’Malley). They may not have played much golf lately, but that doesn’t matter when they strap the boots on because it all comes back.”

With wind predicted for the tournament’s first few days, Stolz said it would take plenty of course experience to tame Thurgoona.

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“It’s playing a lot differently from last year, and the forecast has the wind blowing from every direction, so it will play differently each day.”

Stolz said the players who have a good understanding of the humps and hollows around here would have a big advantage, and if the greens became any quicker than they were during today’s Pro-Am, scoring could be tricky.

“If they get really quick, and you are on the wrong side of the hole, things will be a bit slippery.”

“They are rolling pretty well, but you might need to be defensive.”

“The key will be like most places to be in the fairway from the tee, good iron play, and leave yourself some good chances below the hole.”

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