The final Europe-based event of the Senior Tour season is played in a Pro-Am format for the opening two days before the professionals battle it out on Sunday for the title and Gullit was one of those amateurs lucky enough to play a part at The International, which hosts the event for the first time this week.
Even better, he was matched up with Ryder Cup legend and renowned character of the tour Rocca and the two shared jokes and stories throughout the round – Gullit is fluent in Italian having played there for most of his club career, most notably for AC Milan, where he won three Serie A titles, two European Cups and the prestigious Ballon d’Or in 1987 as the European Player of the Year.
Despite the difficult weather conditions, he thoroughly enjoyed his opening round, alongside a man who famously beat Tiger Woods in the singles matches of The 1997 Ryder Cup.
“It was hard work in that cold,” said Gullit. “I had rain gloves but they did nothing for me! I can only imagine what it’s like for the pros as they are competing this week. For me it’s just a bit of enjoyment.
“I played last year in this tournament and it’s good to see how hard the guys work and how they play out on the course. Myself and Costantino talked the whole way through. He knows a lot about football but we talked more about other things, just life in general.
“The Ryder Cup is one of sport’s biggest events so I'm very privileged and happy to be part of that. It’s great to support this event in Amsterdam too. These guys are legends and have been great golfers in their time, and they have the opportunity to keep on playing golf which is great. They still hit it really well.
“I'm looking forward to tomorrow and hopefully we can get some better weather!”
|1||BROWN, Simon P||ENG||11:30||-3|
|T3||CARRILES, José Manuel||ESP||11:20||Par|
|T6||MARTIN, Miguel Angel||ESP||11:00||1|