Sole Scot Gemma Dryburgh on major mission in Australian Women's Open

Gemma Dryburgh and caddie Paul Heselden are all set for this week's ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open in Adelaide
Gemma Dryburgh and caddie Paul Heselden are all set for this week's ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open in Adelaide
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Gemma Dryburgh is flying as solo Scot in this week's ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open in Adelaide.

The Aberdonian had been hoping to be joined in the LPGA-sanctioned event by Kylie Henry, but she was unable to come through an 18-hole qualifier earlier in the week.

“It would be nice to have a few more Scots, but it’s nice to be here flying the flag,” said Dryburgh, who holds a category for the US-based circuit for the third season in a row.

The 26-year-old missed the cut in last week's ISPS Handa Women's Vic Open, but is quietly confident that her game is close to clicking after enjoying some "warm weather golf" in Australia.

Dryburgh has fond memories of Royal Adelaide, having made her LPGA debut there in 2017 and making the cut alongside fellows Scots Catriona Matthew and Michele Thomson.

One of her aims this time around is to try and boost her chances of playing in more big events later in the season, including the first AIG Women's British Open at Royal Troon in August.

“I feel like I’ve been hitting it as well as ever and my putting has improved a lot,” she said.

“First of all, if I can do well here I’d love to be able to qualify for the ANA (the first major of the year in California in April).

"Then the British Open is always a goal of mine – I’ve not played it before, so that’s on the horizon this year in Scotland.”

Dryburgh, who will have Englishman Paul Heselden on the bag, is out with Americans Kim Kaufman and Austin Ernst in the first two rounds.

The tournament has attracted 15 major champions, including Inbee Park, Lydia Ko and Australia’s Hannah Green, as well as crowd favourites Karrie Webb and Laura Davies.

Last year’s winner Nelly Korda and Australia’s top-ranked player Minjee Lee are also in the star-studded line up.