Aussie Andrew Dodt happily swaps New York holiday for first major appearance at British Open
Queenslander secures spot at Royal Birkdale this weekend by finishing equal fourth in Scottish Open
Andrew Dodt’s wife is going to have to purchase woollens and waterproof attire after her 31-year old husband qualified for this week’s British Open.
Dodt, despite a disappointing Scottish Open final round 73 for a share of fourth place on eight-under par, secured the third and last Royal Birkdale place on offer at Dundonald Links on Sunday.
The strapping Queenslander denied Londoner Anthony Wall, married to an Australian born former air stewardess, by virtue of a higher world ranking. Dodt went into the event ranked No 193 and Wall No 245.
Rachel Dodt arrived from Sydney and into a rain and windswept Glasgow Airport on Saturday morning but packed for a five-day holiday in summery New York, and a last holiday trip overseas Dodt revealed ahead of the couple intending to start a family.
She was among the first to greet Dodt when he left the Dundonald scorer’s hut.
“Rachel and I were meant to be off to New York tomorrow morning, but pretty happy to be going to Birkdale and my first major,” he said.
“So, I am over the moon. Over the moon. It’s been a big goal of mine sort of the back end of last year and this year to play my first major, and yeah, next week, bring it on.”
The result is Dodt’s sixth top-10 in his 26 Tour events this year and, in some way, makes amends for last May’s disappointment in leading going into the final round of the BMW PGA Championship only to finish in a share of sixth.
And encouraging Dodt over the last few holes on the final day at Dundonald was 1995 Scottish Open winner, Wayne Riley, who was working as a course commentator for Sky Sports.
“I found myself, particularly on the back nine, just a little bit mentally fatigued,” said Dodt. “I felt like I used a lot of energy early on in the round and really had to take things a bit slower and take one step at a time a bit more, because I knew the Open spot was right in line and had to sort of dig as deep as I could down the stretch.
“I kind of knew I had to hole that. Up the fairway, said birdie would be nice but par should be good. So, it’s great news that I’ve finally done it, play my first major”.
And Dodt’s effort comes just a month after good friend Wade Ormsby contested his first major in qualifying for the US Open.
Dodt will now join a big contingent of 11 Australians to compete at Royal Birkdale on the 26th anniversary Ian Baker-Finch and Mike Harwood finished one and two in the 1991 Open.