Royal Melbourne to host 2011 Presidents Cup

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MONTREAL, Sep 28 (Reuters) Australia's Royal Melbourne Golf Club will host the Presidents Cup for a second time in 2011, PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem announced.

Royal Melbourne became the first Cup venue outside the United States for the 1998 edition of the biennial team competition between the US and the Internationals.

''I'd like to congratulate and thank Peter Sutherland and the leadership and membership of Royal Melbourne Golf Club on the return of the Presidents Cup in 2011,'' Finchem said in a statement yesterday.

''As we saw in 1998, Australia has some of the best golf fans and best courses in the world.

''The selection of Royal Melbourne as the site of the next international Presidents Cup is affirmation of what the golf club has meant to the history of the Cup.'' Finchem's statement was released shortly before the start of the seventh Presidents Cup at Royal Montreal Golf Club. The 2009 edition will be held in San Francisco.

Australia was chosen as host country for 2011 earlier this year before the PGA Tour decided on Royal Melbourne as the venue course over Kingston Heath Club, the Metropolitan Club and Royal Sydney.

''We talked to a lot of people and got their input for a good period of time,'' Finchem said. ''For a variety of reasons, it just kept coming back that Royal Melbourne was the best location overall.'' The US have won four of the previous six Presidents Cups. The only success for the Internationals came in Melbourne in 1998. In 2003, the two teams battled to a 17-17 draw in South Africa.

REUTERS BJR BD1047

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