Geoff Ogilvy believes there is a necessity for golf to do more in terms of equality in the sport and that the Vic Open should be one of several co-staged events
Ahead of the Vic Open Geoff Ogilvy has been sharing his views on equality in golf and the need for more events of this ilk.
The host venue, 13th Beach Golf Links, sees the innovative format stage a European Tour and LPGA Tour tournament at the same place and the same time – Celine Boutier and David Law were the champions in 2019.
While there have been some more mixed events added to the schedule, most notably the Scandinavian Mixed hosted by Henrik and Annika, there should still be more co-staged events on the main tours according the 2006 US Open champion.
He said: “There’s more than just guys, you know. It just makes sense. We should do this more often. The fact that this happens only once in a year is just nonsense.”
The Australian spoke of his experience from playing in the Vic Open and was able to provide a player’s perspective on the unique week.
“It’s more than just guys in the world who play golf or play sport,” he said. “I’m a golf tragic, so when I come to a golf tournament I’m watching other people play just as much as I’m playing myself.
“I found last year all I wanted to do was watch the women and how they went about it. Some of them are just machines, they don’t hit bad shots and they hit hybrids on to the green to 10 feet all day.
“It’s just a different style. There’s something to be learned from both sides and there’s enjoyment in watching both styles of play.”
Tennis is often the sport that is used as a comparison for other sports striving for equality and Ogilvy believes that the example set by the racket sport can be followed by golf.
“Tennis has clearly benefited. I know to some people it’s not complete equality but at least they play at the same place and the same time and play for the same prize money in Australia at the matches.”
Ogilvy offered some thoughts on why we are still seeing so few of tournaments of this kind and suggested that the sport and those involved could be “scared to rock the successful boat.”
“It’s probably just golf being stuck in conservative traditions. You see the Japanese ladies’ tour is a much bigger and more successful tour in Japan than the men’s tour is,” he said.
“Whenever it’d presented properly, it seems like it’s just as popular. It just needs to have the opportunity.
“It’s just a bit of creative thinking. I’m not sure why, it’s maybe just that everyone’s scared to rock the successful boat they’re riding in.”
This week the men will play the Beach course at 6,778 yards with the women at 6,276 while at the Creek the men will play the course at 6,940 with the women at 6,307.