Australia’s Matt Griffin is continuing his love affair with Korea, claiming his third win in the country at this month’s Korean PGA Championship.
The talented Victorian overcame a strong field at Sky72 Golf Club, near Incheon, via bogey-free rounds on the opening 36 holes, followed by back-to-back 66s at the weekend for a 20-under total of 268 and a three-stroke advantage over Moon Kyong-jun.
The victory earned Griffin a tidy 200,000,000 Korean won (approximately A$207,000), and represents his third win in Korea, including victory at the 2012 High1 Resort Open and the 2013 SK Telecom Open. Both wins were on OneAsia, the latter helping him to the number one spot on the OneAsia Order of Merit.
Following the win, Griffin announced that he will return to Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course, the place that helped launch his career, for the inaugural Fiji International from 14-17 August.
Griffin won the 2009 Fiji Open and will return to the challenging course with fond memories.
“Being a previous winner gives me a big advantage heading into the tournament,” said Griffin.
“I have played the course a number of times and feel confident around the testing layout. Given the strong winds expected having previous knowledge will be a big advantage.”
Now a more experienced player, Griffin will be one of the favourites to win the inaugural Fiji International.
“I have continued to develop under my coach Denis McDade and I feel my game is a lot more consistent than it was back in 2009,” added Griffin.
“In 2009 I missed a lot of cuts and only played well occasionally whereas now I feel I give myself more chances to win.”
With Major winners Vijay Singh and Nick Price as well as Indian rising star Anirban Lahiri also in the field Griffin acknowledges that the competition will be fierce.
“But there are a number of great players playing the Fiji International and many that can take the prize come Sunday.”
“I have always expected a lot of myself on the course which motivates me to work hard to prepare and give myself a chance to win.”
Since his last trip to Fiji, Griffin has twice won on the PGA Tour of Australasia most recently at the Victorian Open in February.
He is also the 2013 OneAsia Order of Merit champion, a Tour where he has notched a further two titles.
“Winning a professional event is a tough thing to do and until you win one you’re not sure you can do it,” continued Griffin.
“Getting that win in Fiji gave me the confidence that I could and I have been fortunate to keep doing it.”
“Having had a number of wins I know if I am in the mix come Sunday then I can give myself a chance to win the Fiji International.”
The Fiji International will be played at Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course from 14-17 August and will be Fiji’s first internationally broadcast golf tournament.
Being played for a US$1 million prize purse the Fiji International will be co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia and OneAsia.