A formidable field featuring four Major Champions and six players from the top 60 of the World Ranking will grace Oceânico Victoria Golf Course for the 9th Portugal Masters next week.
Ireland’s Darren Clarke and Padraig Harrington, Germany’s Martin Kaymer and Scotland’s Paul Lawrie have accrued a total of seven Majors – although they have yet to enjoy success in the Portugal Masters.
Kaymer is the highest‐ranked player in the field at World Number 20 while Welshman Jamie Donaldson, Italian Francesco Molinari, Scotland’s Marc Warren and France’s Victor Dubuisson complete the set of top 60 players heading to the Algarve.
Donaldson will of course be forever remembered for sealing Europe’s victory in the 2014 Ryder Cup and the three-time European Tour champion is joined in Portugal by four of his team‐mates from Gleneagles: Denmark’s Thomas Bjorn, Dubuisson, Scotland’s Stephen Gallacher and Kaymer and who will all be bidding to succeed Alex Levy who last year became the eighth different winner in eight editions of the Portugal Masters.
Another winner of the Portugal Masters, Alvaro Quiros, is attached to Oceânico Victoria Golf Course, and the big‐hitting Spaniard will aim to capitalise on local knowledge when competing for the ninth successive season in the €2 million tournament.
Similarly, the 2012 Madeira Islands Open champion, Faro-born Ricardo Santos who lives in Vilamoura and compatriot Ricardo Gouveia will also shoulder the expectations of the home crowd. Gouveia is currently second in the Road to Oman Rankings thanks to one win and eight further top ten finishes on the Challenge Tour this term.
Other notable names in the field include Paul Dunne who stunned the golfing world in July when sharing the lead going into the final round of the 144th Open Championship at St Andrews. The Irishman who turned professional after helping GB&I to victory in the Walker Cup eventually finished with a highly creditable share of 30th place.
With so many of the world’s top pros once again anticipating another great tournament and entering with high hopes of winning one of the European Tour’s most prestigious events, fans across the globe are guaranteed another spectacular golfing occasion at the latest mouth-watering edition of the Portugal Masters.
Tickets to the Portugal Masters are now available to buy through www.tickets.europeantour.com. Adult tickets cost €20 if purchased in advance – a saving of €5 on the gate price – and customers can save €10 by buying a season ticket for €50 online, or by calling +44 1344 840538. Under‐16s go free when accompanied by an adult and parking is also free. Hospitality packages are available to buy online.
By Tom Callan | Photo: Darren Clarke and Padraig Harrington (© Getty Images).