Ryder Cup star Thorbjørn Olesen will lead a trio of great Danes at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open this July when he is joined by the winning captain in Paris, Thomas Bjørn, as well as Denmark’s highest-ranked player Lucas Bjerregaard.
The second Rolex Series event of the 2019 Race to Dubai is attracting a world-class field, with 2017 Race to Dubai champion Tommy Fleetwood already confirmed to play, alongside Major winners Darren Clarke, Louis Oosthuizen, Padraig Harrington, Graeme McDowell and Danny Willett.
Ian Poulter, meanwhile, will return to the event for only the second time in 13 years as his former Ryder Cup Captain Paul McGinley assumes the role of tournament host at Lahinch Golf Club from July 4-7. Tickets are available here.
Four of the current top five in the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex will be playing, with Shane Lowry arriving home as the most recent Rolex Series champion – ten years after his famous victory as an amateur in his national open – following January’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship win.
Olesen returns to Ireland, where he notched up a top ten finish last year, following a winning Ryder Cup debut last September when, on the final day, he dispatched of Jordan Spieth 5&4 as Team Europe romped to a 17½-10½ victory over Jim Furyk’s USA team at Le Golf National.
For Captain Bjørn, it was a monumental achievement against a much-fancied American team and the 15-time European Tour winner will no doubt receive a warm welcome in County Clare – especially as a former champion of the event in 2006.
Joining Olesen and Bjørn at Lahinch Golf Club is Bjerragaard, who last month overcame Tiger Woods in the quarter-finals of the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Championship, two weeks before the American claimed his 15th Major title at the Masters Tournament.
“I’m really looking forward to returning to Ireland this year,” said Olesen, a Rolex Series winner last year in Italy, and a man who has played the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open in the past four successive years. “It is always an event I really enjoy – the golf courses are generally great and the Irish fans are some of the best in the world.
“I have heard really good things about Lahinch Golf Club and it looks like it will be perfect preparation for The Open Championship two weeks later. It’s all set up to be a fantastic few weeks of golf.”
Bjørn said: “I love the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, it’s always a fun event and it is always a pleasure to play on these great Irish links courses for such a big tournament. Paul is a good friend of mine and I know he has put a huge amount of work into making this a special event, so I have no doubt it will be a week to remember.”
Bjerregaard said: “I really enjoy links golf and the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open is always a huge event on the calendar, as a Rolex Series event with such a long history. Obviously Søren Kjeldsen won in 2015 and Thomas and Søren Hansen have won this tournament too, so hopefully one of us Danes can add to that list in July.”
Lahinch Golf Club, perched on the famous Wild Atlantic Way coast of Ireland, is expected to provide a festival atmosphere unlike any other, with the popular tourist village of Lahinch on the doorstep of the famous links course.
The 2018 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open provided one of the most dramatic finales in the tournament’s 91-year history, as Russell Knox holed a 40-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole to clinch a place in a play-off alongside New Zealander Ryan Fox.
The Scot then sank an almost identical putt on the first play-off hole to seal his maiden Rolex Series title and send the huge Irish crowds into raptures, and the former World Golf Championships winner is also confirmed to return for his title defence in the summer.
With blazing sunshine and a star-studded field, a total of 94,239 people attended the event at Ballyliffin Golf Club.
Tickets for the 2019 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open are on sale at www.dubaidutyfreeirishopen.com and begin at €23 for Pro-Am Wednesday, with single tickets for Thursday or Friday costing €30 and day tickets for each weekend day costing €35 each. An adult season ticket, which covers five days of world-class golf from Wednesday to Sunday, begins at a special price of just €110.
Children under 12 years of age are entitled to free entry when accompanied by an adult, day junior tickets for those between 12 and 17 years of age are €10 (€30 for a season ticket) while those aged between 18 and 21, as well as students with valid student cards and over 60s, can avail of a concession ticket - €20 for a day (€80 for a season).
The only official sales channel to purchase tickets for this year’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Open is via the ticketing platform Eventbrite. The resale of Dubai Duty Free Irish Open tickets on unofficial platforms contravenes the European Tour’s ticket terms and conditions and such sales render the ticket void.
Official Hospitality tickets are also available on the ticketing page, or alternatively contact the European Tour’s dedicated Hospitality Sales Team, who will be happy to answer any queries and discuss the various hospitality options, on email@example.com or +44 (0) 1344 840681.
|T4||CABRERA BELLO, Rafa||ESP||18||-13|