Gustav Adell arrives at the Swedish Challenge hosted by Robert Karlsson with the luxury of knowing he is one of only two players competing this week who have triumphed at Katrineholms Golfklubb before.
The 33 year old lifted the title in central Sweden in 2015, finishing one clear of compatriot Bjorn Hellgren, who will also be competing in his homeland this week.
That victory was Adell’s fourth on the Nordic Golf League, and the man from Linköping is quick to acknowledge how important a return to the winners’ circle proved to be for his career.
“It was a very big win for me two years ago,” he said. “Not only was it really important for me to win again, but I earned an invite into the KLM Open because of my victory here and Robert’s link with that tournament.
“Robert was brilliant with me. We played a practice round together, my caddie and his caddie also spent a lot of time together that week, and he gave me lots of amazing advice.
“What he has done for Swedish golf by hosting an event is huge, and everyone here really appreciates what he has done by choosing to give back to his home town.”
Adell, who joins fellow countryman Joakim Rask as the only other player teeing it up this week to have won a professional event at Katrineholms GK, needed to fight hard to make it into the tournament.
Two closing birdies during yesterday’s qualifier secured his place in a six-man play-off, and after holding his nerve to make par when playing the 18th on two further occasions, he took the last place in the field.
“It was a great feeling to make it through,” he said. “It was touch and go whether I was going to make it, but I made birdies on the 17th and 18th to get into a six-man play-off with three spots on offer.
“I was really nervous playing the 18th again, but knowing I had won here before really helped me in the play-off. To have the chance to compete at Katrineholms again is fantastic and I’m really looking forward to this week.”
Having beaten the likes of Tapio Pulkkanen, Mark Flindt Hasstrup and Simon Forsström to land top spot at the picturesque course two years ago, what does the past master believe is the best way of conquering Katrineholms?
“The key is to be straight off the tee,” he said. “It is going to be quite tricky this week as the greens are firm, so you really need to be on the fairway in order to properly attack them.
“I spoke to Robert earlier in the week and he said the greens are likely to get even firmer, so you really need to put the ball in the right areas on the green or you have no chance – if you find the edges then the ball will just roll away.
“In order to score here you have to attack the par fives – that’s how you do well at Katrineholms.”