Lucas Herbert will have one thing on his mind when he tees off at the Victorian Open, and that is to win his first event as a professional.
The 23-year-old Neangar Park GC product is currently ranked 75 in the world and will head into the tournament as the top ranked male Australian at the European Tour co-sanctioned event.
The Vic Open will be held at 13th Beach Golf Links, Barwon Heads, a course Herbert knows all too well.
“I nearly won in 2017, just finished off badly in the last four holes,” Herbert said.
“Other than that, I was right there and probably had a really good chance to win realistically.”
The near-miss a few years ago hasn’t impacted Herbert’s confidence in the lead-up to the Open.
“You expect to go out there and play well and give yourself a chance to win every week,” he said.
“I think sometimes if your form’s good, maybe a bit more realistic, but I think you turn up every week trying to win, especially when you come to an event in Australia, it’s a great chance to put the first win on the resume.”
Another of Herbert’s ambitions for 2019 is to be selected for the Presidents Cup team.
“I think it’s all on me, I don’t think I am going to get gifted a captain’s pick there, so it’s all down to whether I can play well enough to put myself on the team or not.”
However, Herbert is more than confident with his game ahead of the tournament’s first round.
“Came back pretty well after a nice break over Christmas, which was good to recharge the batteries,” Herbert said.
The tournament’s 2018 champion Simon Hawkes will return to defend his title.
Herbert will tee off in round one at 7:40am with England’s Andrew Johnston and Japan’s Ryo Ishikawa.
Fellow Bendigo golfer Andrew Martin will also play in the Vic Open and will tee off at 8:30am with Australian Andrew Evans and Thailand’s Jazz Janewattananond.
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