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Luiten relishing Oman Open return
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Luiten relishing Oman Open return

Joost Luiten is hoping a second career victory at the Oman Open can propel him to big things as both The Ryder Cup and the Olympic Games are on the 34-year-old’s radar for 2020.

Joost Luiten - the winner of the inaugural NBO Oman Open

“I have got great memories from the 2018 Oman Open,” said Luiten, who won by two ahead of England’s Chris Wood at Al Mouj Golf in what was the first ever tournament on the European Tour to be played in Oman. “This course is one of the prettiest and best that we play all season long on the European Tour and it’s a great event.

“Of course, it’s always special to go to a course where you’ve won before so I’m really looking forward to it - to get back to the familiar sights and sounds and hopefully bring back the title again.

“This year it’s a Ryder Cup year so a couple of wins could see me make the team. It’s also an Olympic year and I’d like to qualify for that and do well there. The Olympics in Rio four years ago was really special and this year it’s in Japan which is a country I’ve never been to so I’d love to go there.”

Luiten’s Oman Open victory was the sixth of his European Tour career and he believes the Greg Norman-designed course at Al Mouj Golf sets up well for his strengths.

“It’s one of those golf courses where you’ve got to drive the ball well,” he said. “If you start to miss fairways you’re going to struggle because there’s a lot of undulation and some sandy patches.

“It can be punishing so you’ve got to focus on the fairways and greens, once you’re on the greens you can make some birdies and that plays to my strengths.

“Normally I am pretty straight off the tee and I hit a lot of greens so hopefully I can get the putter hot - that was certainly the formula that worked for me in 2018.”

The US$1,750,000 Oman Open gets underway at Al Mouj Golf, Muscat on February 27 and will finish on March 1.