Australia’s top amateur golfer Ryan Ruffels has decided to turn pro and take on the PGA Tour.
The 17-year old from Sydney, Australia has a very impressive amateur resume that includes Australia Boys Amateur Champion, Junior World Champion, and Riversdale Cup Champion.
Ruffels has also twice made the cut at the Australian Open, finishing inside the top-25 at age 15 in 2013. Additionally, Ruffles made the cut at the Canadian Open this past summer where he opened with a first-round 66.
Ruffels made the decision shortly after finishing runner-up at the Asia-Pacific Amateur last fall, just one spot shy of a Masters exemption.
“It’s been an anxious wait and I feel like I’m ready, know what those guys are about and how they go about it,” Ruffels said in a Golf AU news release. “I’ve played events on the US Tour, the European Tour and Aussie Tour now, so I’ve got a good gauge now as opposed to jumping into something -- I’m prepared and know what to expect.”
Ruffels's first event as a pro will be the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego, Calif. He will be returning to the course where he won the Junior World in 2014 and he joined the likes fellow Aussie Jason Day and Tiger Woods. In fact, Ruffels will get a chance to learn the course from Day, the defending champion of the event.
“It’s huge. I met Jason for the first time in Canada and I got to know him a little bit there. We’ve exchanged text messages over the Christmas period and I’m going to play a practice round with him on Tuesday at Farmers Insurance."
Ruffels has also received an exemption into the AT&T Pro-am and is confident he and his management team will secure five more spots to reach the allowed seven exemptions. Keep an eye out for him in his quest to get inside the top 125 money list and secure his PGA Tour card.