The timing couldn't have been better for the Australian Open as American star Matt Kuchar finally rediscovered his winning touch.
With the big three of Jason Day, Adam Scott and Marc Leishman missing this week's national Open at The Lakes in Sydney, the organisers are looking to a clutch of internationals en route to next week's World Cup of Golf in Melbourne to help boost crowds.
Among them is Kuchar, now an eight-time PGA Tour winner.
The American hadn't tasted victory for four years and 115 starts before breaking the drought at the Mayakoba Classic in Mexico on Sunday.
Kuchar won with a score of 22-under 262, the lowest 72-hole score in tournament history.
But it wasn't easy as his closing two-under 69 was only just enough for a one-shot win over New Zealand's fast-finishing Danny Lee (65).
The win brightens a disappointing year in which 40-year-old Kuchar finished out of the top 70 on the PGA Tour money list for the first time since 2007 and failed to make the Ryder Cup team for the first time in 10 years.
RIGHT: Kuchar defeated Lee by one shot. PHOTO: Rob Carr/Getty Images.
"My 2018 wasn't what I wanted," Kuchar said. "This is a high note. It's an amazing thing to get a win."
He added Mayakoba to his schedule at the last minute and hired a local caddie from El Camaleon, with his regular caddie having previous plans.
Kuchar referred to the week as a "working vacation" because of the beaches and amenities at Mayakoba, though it felt like work at the end.
"Golf is such a funny game," he said. "It's hard to predict when it's going to come around."
India's Anirban Lahiri, who is also en route to the Australian Open, finished tied 10th.
Young Sydneysider Cameron Davis finished tied 48th as he prepares to defend the Australian Open title he won from a field including Day and Jordan Spieth at The Australian last year.