Dubai Duty Free Irish Open
Lahinch GC, Lahinch, Co. Clare, Ireland 04 Jul 2019 - 07 Jul 2019
Tuesday, 02 July 2019
Russell Knox - Dubai Duty Free Irish Open champion  (Getty Images)
Russell Knox - Dubai Duty Free Irish Open champion (Getty Images)

Russell Knox was left pinching himself after last year's Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and hopes his return to the event can give him a first win of 2019.

The Scot won at Ballyliffin Golf Club in thrilling fashion 12 months ago, holing a 45-foot birdie putt to force a play-off before sinking another fine effort on the first extra hole to beat New Zealand’s Ryan Fox.

"It was a crazy ending to the tournament that fortunately I was on the good end of," Knox said ahead of this year's event.

"To hole a par in the last hole to eventually make the play-off is obviously an Irish Open I'll never forget. And to somehow walk it again is obviously a dream come true.

"To hole a putt in any tournament to win, I'll just never forget the whole atmosphere, the crowd, everything, the cheers when the putts went in, it's kind of a pinch-yourself moment."

This year the tournament is taking place at Lahinch Golf Club and Knox is hoping it will be the scene of a complete four-round performance.

"Lahinch is a great track. It's very lengthy, very similar to some of the courses I grew up playing in the north of Scotland.

"I love playing Ireland. And I hope it continues this week and in a couple weeks' time, too.

"I think every aspect of my game feels very good. And I've been driving well. I think recently I've been putting great for the last month or two. There's been no really glaring weakness. Just try to put it all together for four days.

I'm happy about not having missed very many cuts but I have to turn those into finishes somehow and obviously finishing in the 20s or 30s just means that I've had one kind of bad day or just not quite being clicking on all cylinders.

"But I've been fortunate in my career in the last 10 years or so that every year I've gotten on a little roll and obviously we all know it can happen at any time. So let's hope it starts right here."

Knox has enjoyed his first few days in Lahinch, which he feels has similarities to last year's venue.

He said: "There are a lot of similarities The views are unbelievable. Just like last year at Ballyliffin, you're right on the water. Beautiful beaches. It is an amazing - very peaceful part of the world.

"I've enjoyed my first couple of days here. I feel like there are a lot of similarities. And you feel very relaxed because you're in the middle of nowhere. There's not that much going on and it's very peaceful.

"And as the golf course, very lengthy, obviously. I think there's a lot of similarities. And hopefully I play the same."

A Rolex Series Event

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1RAHM, JonESP18-16
T4ROCK, RobertENG18-13

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