By Will Pearson, europeantour.com
at Rockliffe Hall
Three-time former winner Carl Mason will begin his bid for a quartet of English Senior Open titles alongside American Tim Thelen and Angel Franco of Paraguay when play gets under way in County Durham on Friday.
The magnificent Rockliffe Hall in Darlington this week hosts the return of the English Senior Open after a five-year absence and Mason, who made this event his third European Senior Tour scalp in his rookie season ten years ago before adding further triumphs in 2004 and 2006, will tee off from the tenth tee at 1010 local time.
Australian Peter Fowler prevailed two weeks ago at the French Riviera Masters to climb back into contention for a second John Jacobs Trophy and he will begin the first round at 1100 with Senior Tour rookies – and fellow recent winners – Steen Tinning of Denmark and England’s Simon P Brown.
Meanwhile, Paul Wesselingh, who tops the Senior Tour Order of Merit with earnings of €173,213 thus far this season, tees it up on the first hole at 1010 on Friday alongside former European Ryder Cup Captain Mark James and compatriot Barry Lane.
After five top ten finishes in his last six starts, Spaniard Miguel Angel Martin will the play the first round with another of the Senior Tour’s current form-dogs in Scot Andrew Oldcorn, who finished tied second to Fowler in France two weeks ago to go with another runner-up spot at the WINSTONgolf Senior Open earlier in September.
That three-ball, which gets under way at 1040 from the first, is completed by Englishman David J Russell.
Scotland’s Bill Longmuir won the fourth and most recent edition of the English Senior Open at St Mellion International Resort six years ago, and he will take to Rockliffe Hall’s lush links alongside Argentinian Luis Carbonetti and England’s Roger Roper at 1000 on Friday morning.