European Ryder Cup stars Rafa Cabrera-Bello, Paul Casey, Tommy Fleetwood, Sergio Garcia, Tyrrell Hatton, Ian Poulter, Justin Rose, Henrik Stenson and Lee Westwood join defending Champion Graeme McDowell in looking to get their campaign to qualify for the 2021 European Ryder Cup team off to the strongest possible start at the Saudi International powered by Softbank Investment Advisers, Royal Greens Golf & Country Club, 4 – 7 February 2021.
With World Number One and 2020 Masters Champion Dustin Johnson and 2020 US Open Champion Bryson DeChambeau already confirmed in the field, along with reigning Open Champion Shane Lowry and American stars Phil Mickelson and Patrick Reed, the strength of the already announced field means huge ranking points will be on offer for Europe’s leading golfers as they look to get their 2021 qualifying efforts off to a fast start as they seek to secure a coveted place on the 2021 European Ryder Cup team.
With a line-up that looks set to ensure that the Saudi International powered by Softbank Investment Advisers will be one of the strongest events on the 2021 European Tour schedule , Golf Saudi is looking to build on the momentum resulting from hosting two extremely successful weeks of Ladies European Tour events this month as interest and participation in golf continues to grow in the Kingdom.
Fleetwood, a six-time winner on the European Tour and standout player in Europe’s Ryder Cup victory in Paris in 2018, is making his debut this year in the Saudi International powered by Softbank Investment Advisers, commented; “From all I’ve heard from the lads who played there the last couple of years, the Saudi International is already established itself as one of the leading events on the European Tour both in terms of set up and facilities as well as quality of the field, which is really impressive this year.’
Poulter, who played for the first time in the 2020 edition added, “I really enjoyed the tournament at the beginning of this year and am psyched to be returning next February. The course sets up for my game rather nicely so I was pretty frustrated to only finish in the top 20 and will certainly be aiming to finish rather higher up the leader board this year! It’s a fantastic Championship course with some amazing vistas and I also really like the fact we get to play a part in introducing golf to a whole new audience in a new region.
“With Ryder Cup qualification on the line, I am obviously looking to get my campaign off to a fast start and getting a decent finish or winning the Saudi International against such a stellar field would be massive. It’s been a really weird year with Covid so we are all looking forward to a fresh start in 2021 and I am hoping it is also a strong start as I keep my eyes firmly focused on qualifying for the European team at Whistling Straits.”
Majed Al Sorour, CEO of the Saudi Golf Federation and Golf Saudi, said: “This announcement marks yet another amazing group of golf stars joining our 2021 field and the excitement of all the players to kick-off afresh in 2021, in Saudi Arabia is heartening to hear. The line-up for the tournament is looking strong and with more players still to be announced in the coming weeks – and on the back of two excellent Ladies European Tour events earlier this month – we are very much looking forward to the third edition of our tournament. We believe it will be the strongest instalment to date and will serve as a fabulous illustration that Saudi Arabia is open for business.”
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