Brian Decker – PGA Tour Canada
July 23, 2013 – Oakville, ON (ISN) – Six PGA TOUR Canada players are set to tee it up at this week’s RBC Canadian Open on the PGA TOUR, after the top three on the Order of Merit qualified along with sponsor’s exemption Eugene Wong and Monday Qualifiers Andrew Georgiou and Jesse Smith.
Riley Wheeldon, Wil Collins and Stephen Gangluff finished in the top three on the Order of Merit through The Players Cup to qualify, each capturing PGA TOUR Canada victories in the season’s first three events to solidify their position.
Wheeldon, a 22-year old from Comox, British Columbia, played his way to the top of the Order of Merit with his first PGA TOUR Canada victory at the Syncrude Boreal Open presented by AECON. The former Big East Player of the Year at the University of Louisville also posted a then-career best solo third finish at the Times Colonist Island Savings Open in June and is the top position of The Five with $39,937.50 in earnings. Wheeldon will be making his PGA TOUR debut this week at Glen Abbey.
Collins played his way into the top three with a victory at the Dakota Dunes Open presented by SaskTel along with a T-5 finish at The Players Cup to claim second spot on the Order of Merit with $34,342.75. Collins also qualified for the 2013 US Open and played the PGA TOUR in 2009. Collins will be playing his third RBC Canadian Open and is looking to make the cut for the first time.
Gangluff, the winner at the season-opening Times Colonist Island Savings Open, earned his way at no. 3 with $28,444.17. The Marysville, Ohio resident won the PGA TOUR Canada Order of Merit in 2006 and played the PGA TOUR in 2012, before regaining status on PGA TOUR Canada in 2013. Gangluff was able to beat out The Players Cup champion Carlos Sainz, Jr. by a mere $179.67 to claim the no.3 spot. Gangluff will be playing his fourth RBC Canadian Open, with his best finish a tie for 35th in 2006.
Georgiou, a 27-year old from Cape Town, South Africa, earned his spot in the field by tying for medalist honours at the RBC Canadian Open Monday Qualifier with a 7-under par 64. Georgiou, who played his way through PGA TOUR Canada Qualifying School this spring and has a season-best finish of T-51 in his rookie season at the Syncrude Boreal Open presented by AECON, also earned his way through RBC Canadian Open regional qualifying in June. Georgiou qualified for the 2012 Open Championship and will be playing his second PGA TOUR event.
Smith, a 32-year old from Dover, New Hampshire who calls the Six Nations Reserve outside of Brantford, Ontario home, finished third at the RBC Canadian Open Monday Qualifier with a 6-under 65. Smith also qualified for the US Open earlier this year.
Wong, a 22-year old from North Vancouver, British Columbia, was offered a sponsor’s exemption by Golf Canada thanks to his outstanding performance in 2012 when he won twice on PGA TOUR Canada, including a dramatic 72nd hole eagle to win the TOUR Championship.
28 PGA TOUR Canada alumni will also tee it up at the RBC Canadian Open, including Canadians Mike Weir, Graham DeLaet, David Hearn, Brad Fritsch, Stephen Ames, Adam Hadwin, Peter Laws, Bryn Parry and Roger Sloan.