David Lynn returns to the scene of his maiden European Tour victory this week when he defends The KLM Open at Hilversumsche Golf Club with his confidence riding high on the back of a strong showing in Wales.
The Englishman finished joint eighth in The Celtic Manor Wales Open last week to record his first top ten finish of the season and give himself the ideal preparation for his return to The Netherlands.
Last year Lynn shot a superb final round of 66, six under par, for a three stroke victory over Ryder Cup player Paul McGinley and Richard Green. Lynn started the final day three shots off the lead held by Green but overhauled the Australian with some key putts over the closing holes on a tough final day at Hilversum.
“Defending the title will obviously be a nice experience,” said Lynn last week. “I’m sure I will get some nice feelings walking around that course again regardless of what happens.”
Maarten Lafeber heads the home challenge following his heroic victory in October 2003 when he became the first Dutch player to win the title since Joop Ruhl in 1947. Lafeber joined Robert-Jan Derksen and Rolf Muntz as recent Dutch winners on The European Tour International Schedule, Derksen winning the 2003 Dubai Desert Classic and the Madeira Island Open Caixa Geral de Depositos earlier this season and Muntz capturing the 2000 Qatar Masters. Together they will lead a three-pronged attack on their national title.
Tobias Dier and Sven Struver of Germany, Scotland’s Gordon Brand Jnr and Welshman Mark Mouland are other past champions in the field.
The KLM Open is one of the oldest events in Continental Europe, dating back to 1912 and will be played over the picturesque tree-lined course at Hilversum for the 24th time this week.
The tournament boasts a long list of illustrious winners including Major Champions Seve Ballesteros, Bernhard Langer, Bobby Locke, José Maria Olazábal, Payne Stewart, JH Taylor and Roberto de Vicenzo, along with recent European Tour Order of Merit winners Colin Montgomerie and Lee Westwood.