Brett Rumford is making just his sixth European Tour appearance since last July, in his hometown of Perth, Australia. Having finished in the top 25 at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic and then tied seventh last week in South Africa, it seems the 38 year old's recovery from an unusual injury is going well.
In March last year Rumford was admitted to hospital during the Tshwane Open after he ate an apple which caused a blockage in his digestive system, and as a result had to have 30cm of his small intestine removed.
He returned to action less than three months later, but he drastically underestimated the toll the whole ordeal had taken on his body and he did not play again in 2015 after The Open Championship.
“After my surgery from last year, it was a real eye-opener into how much your body goes in the opposite direction with your immune system being taken out like that,” he said.
“It was really naïve of me to think that I could just come back after three months, with the surgery I had.
"I just felt if I could swing the golf club, I could go out and compete. I didn’t realise just how much the effect of having 12 inches of small intestine removed would take on my immune system. My fatigue levels were through the roof.”
Rumford worked tirelessly with Aaron Doyle from Drive 360, an Australian fitness training company, to return to full health and restore the strength required to compete full-time as a golf professional.
Adding to his five European Tour victories this week would be extra special for Rumford, who is enjoying the comforts of being in Perth. His wife and two daughters are following him around the course and he seems at home in hot, windy conditions.
“I’m used to these conditions. I'm from Perth and it gets pretty windy there with the Fremantle Doctor blowing through most afternoons.”