Wednesday, 20 September 2017
Andy Sullivan  (Getty Images)
Andy Sullivan (Getty Images)

Andy Sullivan returns to a happy hunting ground hoping to kick-start his season at this week's Portugal Masters.

The Englishman's last European Tour win came here at Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Course in 2015, the last of three wins that season that helped catapult him onto the Ryder Cup Team at Hazeltine National.

He has been a picture of consistency so far this term - missing just four cuts - but two of those have been in his last two events, not that he is worried as he returns to a course where he also finished second last year.

"I feel like it's somewhere where I've come and played some good golf," he said. "After a bit of a slow year, hopefully I can come and pick some form up here again and try to pick another win up.

"It's one of those courses where if you do get off to a good start it takes the pressure off and you feel like you can go out there and get it around a little bit easier. Last year I shot four under in the first round and then ten in the second. This course does offer a lot of birdies but if you chase it, it can catch you out.

After a bit of a slow year, hopefully I can come and pick some form up here again and try to pick another win up - Andy Sullivan

"I was disappointed not to get four rounds in last week (at the KLM Open) but the game felt in good shape and I made a lot of birdies. That feels good coming into this week when you know you've definitely got to come around here and make a lot of birdies."

Another man with a good record around here is Nicolas Colsaerts with three top-20s including a runners-up finish in 2014.

That was the season he had a putt for a 59 in the first round and the big-hitting Belgian believes low scores will once again be the order of the day.

"There is a chance here, it basically depends on the wind," he said. "Once you get a hold of how the course plays, for the guys that hit it a long way, they can get rid of some of the bunkers, they can cut corners, they can get pretty close to some of the greens and give themselves short irons in.

"You still have to get on the roll, don't get me wrong, but it's going to be one of those courses where it can happen."

Colsaerts has had a stop-start campaign in 2017 with two top tens but eight missed cuts and is hoping to find some late-season momentum at a course where he feels comfortable.

"This is not the best week for me," he said. "I'm struggling with a couple of different parts of my game but it's always nice to come back to a place where you've played well, that you can basically play with your eyes closed.

"In the weeks now, I would just like to find some momentum coming into the big events that we have the next couple of weeks coming up."

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1BJERREGAARD, LucasDEN18-20
2WARREN, MarcSCO18-16
T3STORM, GraemeENG18-15
T3PEPPERELL, EddieENG18-15
T5GOUVEIA, RicardoPOR18-14
T5LIMA, José-FilipePOR18-14

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