Aussies on Tour: Min Woo Lee to debut at Pebble Beach

Min Woo Lee has sought the advice of fellow Aussie Jason Day as he seeks to make an instant impression on the PGA TOUR at this week’s famed AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in California.

Lee has received a sponsor’s invitation to make his debut on the USA’s main tour ahead of his first appearance in a World Golf Championships event in Florida in a fortnight’s time, the 22-year-old making no effort to hide his intent to play in the US full-time in future.

Drawn to play alongside another Aussie in Rhein Gibson for his opening round to be played on the Pebble Beach Golf Links, Lee took the opportunity on Tuesday to talk to Day about what to expect at Pebble Beach and on the tour as a whole.

“I spoke to Jason today and he gave me a few words of wisdom and a bit of experience from himself,” said Lee, who started 2019 intending to play the Korn Ferry Tour only to switch to the European Tour on the back of top-five finishes at the Saudi International and ISPS HANDA World Super 6 Perth.

“Obviously the European way, same as Adam Scott, is a really good place to start and come over here just because you play different courses and different styles of golf.

“It’s a very good place to start and hopefully I can come over here.

“These opportunities are huge. They’re the biggest tournaments I’ve played and I’m really excited to play them.

“As a 22-year-old you don’t really get too much opportunities like this so hopefully I play well.”

Although it’s a maiden PGA TOUR appearance, it is not Lee’s first trip to Pebble Beach.

The 2016 US Junior champion played in the 2018 US Amateur across the two golf courses in play this week but missed the cut with rounds of 72 (Pebble Beach) and 76 (Spyglass Hill).

“It is my second time here but it’s still amazing,” said Lee, the 2020 ISPS HANDA Vic Open champion.

“I really don’t know the course too much so just to be back is awesome.

“I played that back nine today and it’s something special.”

Lee will begin his opening round from the 10th tee at 5.42am AEDT on Friday morning in a format that will look far more like a traditional tournament than the celebrity extravaganza Pebble Beach is known for.

He is one of nine Australians in the field with Day seeking to turn his love affair with Pebble Beach into a victory, the 33-year-old finishing inside the top five in five of the past six years without being able to secure that elusive win.

Round 1 tee times AEDT

AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
Pebble Beach Golf Links, Pebble Beach, California

Pebble Beach
3.30am*              Matt Jones, John Senden, Brian Harman
3.41am Cameron Percy, Scott Brown, Joel Dahmen
4.58am*              Tim Wilkinson, Vaughn Taylor, Sam Ryder
5.20am Jason Day, Si Woo Kim, Patrick Cantlay
5.42am*              Rhein Gibson, Min Woo Lee, Brandon Hagy

Spyglass Hill
4.14am Cameron Davis, Branden Grace, Patrick Rodgers
4.58am Aaron Baddeley, K.J. Choi, Seamus Power
5.31am Rod Pampling, D.J. Trahan, Kramer Hickok

Defending champion: Nick Taylor
Past Aussie winners: Bruce Crampton (1965), Brett Ogle (1993)
Top Aussie prediction: Jason Day
TV schedule: Live 7am-10am Friday, Saturday; Live 5am-10am Sunday; Live 5am-10.30am Monday on Fox Sports 503.

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