Scott Vincent is one of Zimbabwe’s finest exports, having exploded on to the scene with victory in England during the inaugural Asian Tour International Series — and took full advantage of the LIV Golf ticket that came with it.
The one-time Olympian was possibly a household name in his own house before he grabbed the headlines at Slaley Hall in Newcastle — the first ever Asian Tour event held in the UK — last June.
Then his distinctive look engaged a whole new audience as he teed up just outside London in the first LIV Golf tournament at Centurion Club — think ginger locks flowing out the back of a fedora months before a certain Cam Smith joined LIV Golf’s ranks.
Who was this kid holding his own alongside the likes of Brooks Koepka and Dustin Johnson?
Well, the 30-year-old ‘kid’ is big business in Asia, having claimed the 2021 Sansan KBC Augusta and ANA Open on a three-week bounce, following up with the Mizuno Open early in 2022, booking a spot in the Open Championship in the process.
A week later, Vincent was grabbing attention once again on international TV as he won the International Series England at Slaley Hall in Northumberland, England.
A final-round 66 clinched the win and triggered a snowball of success and eight lucrative events on the LIV series (finishing 14th in Chicago) as well as the Asian Tour Order of Merit crown and a guaranteed place in the 2023 14-event LIV Golf League season alongside superstars such as Phil Mickelson, Koepka, Bubba Watson, Sergio Garcia, Bryson DeChambeau and Cameron Smith.
“I think the past 12 months were not what I was expecting,” Vincent told Golf Digest Middle East. “It has taken me way out of my comfort zone and has been really stretching me.
“But it is allowing me to become the player I really expect to be as I get to rub shoulders with the guys — the ex-PGA guys — and I am truly soaking it all in and loving it.
“It was a stage to really learn, and to get to play on the LIV Series last year was a huge bonus, and I managed to get a lot more comfortable with that.
“Now I have a whole new year ahead of me in 2023, and that is an amazing opportunity once again and I am really looking forward to that.”
Vincent keeps a tight-knit unit with him at all times to keep him grounded in a whirlwind time.
“I think that the team that I have with me is really good and they are helping me get ready for this season,” he said.
“We are just working on the processes and getting the game moving in the right direction. The results will come as I hit my routines.”
Enjoying the journey with Scott Vincent 🙌@GolfDigestME #LIVGolf #IronHeadsGC pic.twitter.com/hIAbOeq5n3
— Iron Heads GC (@IronHeadsGC_) March 13, 2023
While Vincent has amassed around $1.5 million in earnings from LIV Golf alone in 2022, he does not forget how it all began.
“I think what the Asian Tour has done is incredible, how they have stepped out of Covid and set up all these new series and events,” he said. “As a result of that we are seeing a lot more better players coming over to play and compete in these events that would normally only attract one or two global names.
“It is becoming more of a solid, well-rounded tour, not just a feeder tour like before. The Asian Tour has done a great job with that and a lot of people will be prioritising on the Asian Tour full-time.
“But for me, this year I am trying to play a lot less golf — I have played a lot, maybe too much in the past — and now I have that opportunity through the 14 LIV events and the International Series, so I am trying to dial back a bit and give my body a bit of time to recover so I am ready when it needs to be ready.
“I am playing in Oman and Doha and then off to Mexico to start the LIV campaign.”