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Perth golf event to keep Feb timeslot

  • Perth golf event to keep Feb timeslot

    World No.21 Louis Oosthuizen has won the Perth International by one stroke at Lake Karrinyup.

The February timeslot for the Perth International looks like its here to stay, with tournament organisers hoping to lure more top-end talent to the $US1.75 million event.

The depth in talent at the Perth International was clearly lacking in its first three years, with the original October timeslot making it hard to attract players entrenched on the European Tour.

But the move to February has made it easier for European Tour players to make the trip to Perth given many of them had just played in either Malaysia or the Middle East.

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World No.21 Louis Oosthuizen headlined this year's event, while Frenchman Victor Dubuisson, Thorbjorn Olesen, Brett Rumford, Mikko Ilonen, Lucas Bjerregaard, Alejandro Canizares, and Marcus Fraser were some of the other notable players.

IMG Australia's director of golf David Rollo said the February timeslot had ticked a lot of boxes.

"No question the change in date has worked in our favour," Rollo said.

"It's the strongest field we've had for the event. That will probably be the preference going forward.

"Last year players were coming from Portugal. So it definitely makes it easier on the back end of the Middle East swing (in February)."

The Perth International is yet to attract a top-10 player.

Rollo said he would love nothing more than to secure someone of the ilk of Rory McIlroy, Ricky Fowler, Jason Day, Adam Scott, or Jordan Spieth in the coming years.

But he said it would be tough given their schedules on the US PGA Tour.

"We are pleased with the field that we've got, but the ambition is always to try to do more," Rollo said.

The Perth International, which is tri-sanctioned by the European Tour, Asian Tour, and PGA Tour of Australasia, hopes to sign a new deal that will secure the event's future for the coming years.

Oosthuizen (16 under) won this year's event by one stroke from Frenchman Alexander Levy, with Australian Jason Scrivener (14 under) finishing third after making a monster 60-foot putt on the final hole.

"I want to defend any title that I win. I will do everything within my power to come and do that," Oosthuizen said of the prospect of him returning.

"I've really enjoyed Perth this week. Next time I come I'll try to bring the family."

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