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Wednesday, 06 February 2019
Lucas Herbert  (Getty Images)
Lucas Herbert (Getty Images)

Lucas Herbert is hoping to use all the experience gathered in his brilliant 2018 season as he seeks a maiden European Tour win on home soil at this week's ISPS Handa Vic Open.

The Australian did not have full status on the European Tour at the start of last term but two top ten finishes to start the season in his homeland gave him a platform to build on and a combination of impressive performances and invites allowed him to play 21 events, including two Major Championships and the final three Rolex Series events.

A second-placed finish at the Portugal Masters was one of seven top tens and he broke into the top 100 on the Official World Golf Ranking en route to finishing 47th on the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex.

A top ten in Dubai ten days ago has helped him make a good start again and the 23 year old is now looking to kick on even further.

"I'd never even really travelled to Europe," he said. "I had been to the UK once but I had never really been to Europe before. Just getting to experience Sweden and Prague and all these wonderful exotic places for work was pretty cool. I enjoyed my time over there.

"Hopefully I get to play lots more events in the future on the European Tour and see more of the world over there.

"The past year in Europe I've been able to obviously get a lot more experience, play a lot more events and see what kind of worked, week in and week out."

The Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by EGA was Herbert's fourth Rolex Series event in five starts before his good finish in Dubai and he arrives at 13th Beach Golf Club with excellent momentum.

"I felt like Abu Dhabi and Dubai I probably played a little better than scores really indicated in the end," he said. "Hopefully I can continue that form into this week and next week, give myself a good chance to be up near the lead and back in front of the cheering crowds.

"I think you turn up every week trying to win, especially when you come home to an event in Australia, it's a great chance to put the first win on the resumé. So that's where my expectations are at this week."

One man who knows a thing or two about winning is 2006 US Open champion Geoff Ogilvy.

The 41 year old has seen most things in golf before but he is excited about the format this week which sees men and women from four tours playing the same courses at the same time for equal prize money.

The men and women will play separate tournaments going off in alternate groups on the Beach and Creek courses, with play over the weekend taking place over the Beach course.

"This is two real golf tournaments played at the same time like the Australian Open tennis is kind of," he said. "It makes sense, right?

"The Vic Open is a relevant tournament in the world this week. People are noticing because of the equal prize money and the LPGA and the guys' thing. That's a big deal."

Ogilvy's last win came on the US PGA Tour in 2014 and while he has yet to claim a regular European Tour win, he is certain there is more good golf to come.

"I want to play better than I've ever played," he said. "I've still got an itch to scratch, there's a golf feeling in me that I haven't felt probably consistently. I know there's better golf in there."

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1LAW, DavidSCO18-18
T2KENNEDY, BradAUS18-17
T2ORMSBY, WadeAUS18-17
4HARDING, JustinRSA18-16
T5SCRIVENER, JasonAUS18-15
T5DRYSDALE, DavidSCO18-15

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