Darren Clarke is heading “Down Under” so he can get back on top in 2009.

The Ulsterman, 40, will return to Australia for the first time in 11 years when he tees it up in the Australian Open at Royal Sydney from December 11-14.

It’s all part of a hectic, end-of-season schedule designed to catapult him into the world’s top 50 by Christmas and into all of next year’s Majors.

Two wins this season have seen Clarke jump more than 200 places to 60th in the world rankings ahead of this week’s Portugal Masters.

But he wants to push on now and still has the HSBC Champions, the Singapore Open, the Australian Open and the South African Open to look forward to before rounding off his comeback year at the Ernie Els Invitational.

Setting out his stall, Clarke said: “I intend to be inside the top 50 come Christmas and sitting down to my Christmas lunch knowing that I’m playing in all the main events next year.

"I’m particularly looking forward to going to Australia again because I haven’t been there for quite a long time.”

But he confessed that after a series of poor performances over the last five weeks, he’s targeted more consistency on the greens as the key.

Tied for 48th in the Dunhill Links, he said: “It wasn’t too bad a week although my putting stats do not make for the best of reading at the moment.  It’s an area of my game I am working on harder than ever and hopefully the results will be seen.”