Ian Poulter, ever the fashion maven, made sure his IP black shirt and favorite plaid trousers would look resplendent with the yellow blazer they give you for winning the Australian Masters. Then he went out and shot a masterful 67 at Victoria Golf Club in the final round of the JBWere Australian Masters to complete his outfit.
In relatively benign conditions for the Australian Sandbelt region, Poulter’s solid ball striking and putting led to 65-68 as he comfortably led the tournament at 8 under after the first two days. On Saturday Geoff Ogilvy, who grew up down the street from the storied Royal Melbourne and Victoria Golf Clubs, used a entire childhood of local knowledge to his advantage. He rocketed up the leader board with eagle, birdie, birdie on the first three holes and had 9 birdies and an eagle on the day shooting a blistering 63 to take the lead at 13 under par.
As we saw at the Presidents Cup a month earlier, the northern breeze provides the stiffest defense to these Sandbelt courses and the final round would not yield the kind of scoring the players enjoyed the first three days. The wind played havoc on everything from tee to green and even more so on the putting. There were lots of incredulous head shakes after balls seemed to veer inexplicably off line on their way to the hole.
Ogilvy’s jeweled carriage turned into a pumpkin on the back side on Sunday as he made two bogies and a double in the last six holes to take himself out of the hunt. Poulter, on the other hand, eagled the opening hole to tie for the lead and made three more birdies on his way to 15 under and a 3-shot victory. Ian seemed to comprehend the wind effect better than most making a ream of testing 5 to 15 footers to save pars and keep the competition at bay. Through the week he hit over 70% of the greens and was under 28 putts a day on greens that seemed to confound most of the field.
Good bet the yellow blazer will be added to the IP Fashion Collection come spring. He certainly looked handsome in it. On the golf course Ian Poulter Fashion Statements generally speak for themselves. This week his clubs were on the same page as well.