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Charles Howell to play in Australian Open

Rising American star Charles Howell III will play in next month’s Australian Open at the Victoria Golf Club in Melbourne.

This year’s winner of the Michelob Championship at Kingsmill, and currently 15th on the US PGA Tour’s money list, Howell will contest the event again after placing ninth behind last year’s winner Stuart Appleby at The Grand on the Gold Coast.

"Charles is one of those players who's great for the game, he plays aggressively and is a genuine entertainer who really attracts galleries to him," said Australian Golf Union executive director Colin Phillips told AAP.

"And make no mistake, he can play. The media in the United States have been building him right up and last year at The Grand we got a glimpse of what he can do."

Howell’s inclusion for the November 21-24 event brings to three the number of Americans in the field - along with Rich Beem and Kenny Perry - and is sure to add to Appleby’s annoyance.

The defending champion expressed disappointment that local Australian stars have to pay their own travel and accommodation costs to contest tournaments like the Australian Open, while players who are well down the list in the US are paid appearance money.

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