Anthony Quayle was almost offended when his good mate and mentor, Japan Tour stalwart Brendan Jones, asked if the young Queenslander would caddie for him at the 150th Open Championship if Jones qualified via the recent Mizuno Open.

The pair of Australians were out to dinner in Kasaoka when Jones, who is 10th on the Japan Tour’s all-time moneylist with earnings of $US8 million, put the suggestion to Quayle. The Mizuno Open is part of the Open Qualifying Series and each year awards four spots into the Open Championship.

“I said to Jonesy, ‘Well, what if I qualify?!'” Quayle told Australian Golf Digest at St Andrews through laughter. “And Jonesy said, ‘Yeah, that’s fair. Well, I’ll caddie for you then.'”

It was a handshake deal that worked out in Quayle’s favour. Quayle finished second at the Mizuno Open after losing in a playoff, but the consolation prize was earning his Major championship debut. Fellow Australian Brad Kennedy finished in the top four and also qualified for the 150th Open, to boost Australia’s contingent at St Andrews to 11 players.

Quayle (left, thick moustache) and Brad Kennedy (right) qualified via the Gateway To The Open Mizuno Open in Japan.

Now Quayle, 27, is playing practice rounds at the Home of Golf ahead of playing his first Major. “The 150th Open at St Andrews is a pretty red-hot place to make your debut,” the moustached Quayle said on Tuesday at the Old Course.

Quayle, who has won the Queensland Open and Queensland PGA in the past two years, says the strongest parts of his game are from the fairway and in. Get the ball in play, he says, and his irons, short game and putting will shine.

“The Old Course has a lot of semi-blind tee shots and hidden pot bunkers, so I’ve just been using practice rounds to study the tee shots,” Quayle said of the Old Course’s 112 brutal sand traps.

Quayle said he felt comfortable in the strong winds at St Andrews because he learned years ago to hit into the wind, not allow for it. “If you shape the ball into a breeze, it lands on the ground much straighter and doesn’t roll sideways across fairways and greens. It’s much easier that way. I really enjoy playing in the wind.”

Helping map out the old links is Jones, who has crafted an idea lifestyle of kicking arse on the Japan Tour and commuting to Japan from his beloved home of Canberra.

Jones has played in 12 Major championships and brings a wealth of knowledge and calmness to Quayle’s bag for this once-off caddie gig. But there is one thing Quayle won’t let Jones do.

“Jonesy asked me if I needed him to read any putts this week. I said, ‘if I’m getting you to read putts then we’re in trouble,'” Quayle said, prompting a laugh from 47-year-old Jones.

Quayle is grouped for the first two rounds with Zander Lombard and John Parry, off at 10.53am on Thursday local time/ 7.53pm AEST.

Quayle is joined at the Open by fellow Australians Cam Smith, Adam Scott, Marc Leishman, Lucas Herbert, Min Woo Lee, Anthony Quayle, Jason Scrivener, Dimi Papadatos, Jed Morgan, Kennedy and Matt Griffin.