Who are the men to watch at this week’s VTB Russian Open Golf Championship (Senior)? We’ve taken a look at five players who will be aiming for glory at Moscow Country Club.
The only former European Number One in the field, Northern Irishman Ronan Rafferty is a seven-time European Tour winner and made the transition to the over-50s circuit in 2014. The Ulsterman competed in the 1989 Ryder Cup for Team Europe, winning one point with a one-up victory over Mark Calcavecchia in the Sunday singles. Europe successfully retained the Ryder Cup that year after the contest finished 14-14.
A five-time Staysure Tour winner, Peter Fowler will be teeing it up in Russia with the aim of securing a first victory in three years. His last win was the ISPS Handa PGA Seniors Championship, beating Gordon Manson by three shots, for his second title in as many weeks. This season, Fowler has two top three finishes – he was tied second at Sharjah Senior Golf Masters presented by Shurooq and third alongside James Kingston and Cesar Monasterio at the WINSTONgolf Senior Open – in addition to two further top ten placings.
Englishman Philip Golding is the most recent winner on the Staysure Tour after triumphing at the Staysure PGA Seniors Championship at London Golf Club. The victory in England was Golding’s first of the year and fifth since joining the Staysure Tour ranks. He triumphed twice last year, first at the Swiss Seniors Open and then at the Travis Perkins Masters at Woburn Golf Club. In the last Staysure Tour event to be held on Russian soil, the Russian Open Golf Championship (Senior) in 2014, Golding finished in a tie for seventh place.
A man in form, Philip Price has five top ten finishes from seven starts this year. The Welshman followed a seventh-placed finish in the season-opening event in Sharjah with a tied eighth finish at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship. The 51 year old then secured third place at the Senior Italian Open presented by Villaverde resort and tied for second at the Swiss Seniors Open. He came tied 32nd at the Home of Golf in The Senior Open Presented by Rolex and his most recent top ten, a tie for ninth place, came at the Staysure PGA Seniors Championship.
Miguel Angel Martin
He’s yet to secure top spot at a Staysure Tour event, but Miguel Angel Martin is currently enjoying his most successful year since the 2013 season. The Spaniard finished fourth on the Order of Merit on that particular occasion after securing nine top ten finishes from 13 starts. This year, Martin already has four top tens to his name, including a runner-up spot at the Swiss Seniors Open last month. Most recently, the 56 year old ended tied ninth at the Staysure PGA Seniors Championship.