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Angel Hidalgo feeling at home at DLF Golf & Country Club

Angel Hidalgo feeling at home at DLF Golf & Country Club

Angel Hidalgo compared DLF Golf & Country Club to his favourite course in the world after firing an impressive 67 over the intimidating layout on day one of the Hero Indian Open.

The New Delhi venue looks nothing like anything else the players face all year on the DP World Tour, with its intimidating tee-shots, huge changes in elevation and dramatic landscaping and bunkering.

But Spaniard Hidalgo - after pairing eight birdies with a bogey and a double on day one - revealed he felt it played like Real Club Valderrama, the storied venue in his homeland which hosted the Ryder Cup in 1997.

"To be honest this is the most similar course we have to Valderrama, which is probably my favourite golf course, which is one you need to play really hard and fight," he said. "This is an ideal one. 

"We’ll see what happens the next three days."

Hidalgo's countryman Adrian Otaegui carded just one bogey in his opening 67, an impressive feat when you consider there were just seven bogey-free rounds across the four tournament days in 2023.

"Anything can happen on every hole here," he said. 

"On the last two or three anything can happen. There will be some drama, but as a player you try to play one shot after another, try to get in good position and keep going."

Dutchman Joost Luiten is something of an expert at DLF G&CC, finishing ninth in 2018 and third last year in his two previous appearances.

Joost Luiten

He carded an impressive 65 for his lowest round over the Gary Player-designed course and revealed he feels one of the keys to conquering it is being able to take the rough with the smooth.

"This course is demanding," he said. "Every tee-shot, you know you can’t hit it that far off line or you’re in a hazard or have a lost ball. There’s so many things going on. It’s a very demanding golf course, especially off the tee.

"If you can get the ball in the fairway you can shoot a score. I think that’s what I did.

"Unfortunately I had to take two bogeys but that happens on this golf course. The good thing today was that I just accepted it. I went bogey-bogey on three and four and that’s just this golf course. I’ll keep trying to make birdies and luckily I did in the end."

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