Last Coolum PGA saddens Chalmers

Greg Chalmers at a press conference at the Palmer Coolum Resort ahead of the PGA.
Greg Chalmers at a press conference at the Palmer Coolum Resort ahead of the PGA. Warren Lynam

GOLF: Defending champion Greg Chalmers says he is sad to hear this year's edition of the Australian PGA Championship will be its last at Yaroomba.

The 39-year-old, who last year won the Kirkwood Cup in a dramatic playoff with Robert Allenby and Marcus Fraser, believed the Sunshine Coast venue had proved a popular one during its 11 years of hosting the event.

"It is a little sad. We have been coming here for a while," he said.

"My family loves coming here and it is a chance to catch up with everybody (to finish the season).

"It's a great place for that and it's great timing for that so there is a little sadness to think that is not going to happen anymore.

"For this particular event, this has been a fantastic venue."

PGA of Australia chief executive Brian Thorburn yesterday officially confirmed the $1.5 million tournament won't be on the Sunshine Coast after negotiations with Palmer Coolum Resort broke down.

"It is sad for the people around here," Chalmers said.

"I spoke to a store owner here yesterday and she was a little sad because it brings a lot of revenue to the local community. But these things happen sometimes and we'll move on."

However, Chalmers said the tournament will still be successful wherever it is played.

"I'm pleased we are staying in Queensland. It is going to be different but the PGA is still the PGA," he said. "It is still an event that is going to stand on its own regardless of the venue and I am pretty confident we are going to go to a good venue. The whispers I have heard are pretty good."

Chalmers finished 23rd amid blustery conditions at the Australian Open at Sydney on Sunday, after winning the tournament last year.

"I am really looking forward to doing a better job of defending the PGA (Championship) better than I did at the Open," he said. "My short game was terrible last week and it can't be terrible when it blows 50km an hour.

"I did about two hours chipping today and an hour yesterday and I'll do some more tomorrow."

Topics:  golf pga

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