Top names to appear at dunhill links championship
Europe's leading golf stars will join some of the most enthusiastic and well-known amateur golfers in the world for the dunhill links championship to be held at St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns next week.
With US$5 million in prize money and Ryder Cup points at stake, the Scottish galleries will be in full voice as they watch Stephen Gallacher to see if he can defend the title which he won last year in a dramatic play-off with Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell. Ireland's Padraig Harrington, winner in 2002, Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke, Scotland's Colin Montgomerie and Paul Lawrie, winner in 2001, and England's Lee Westwood, winner in 2003, Ian Poulter and David Howell will all be battling for one of the biggest prizes on the European Tour. The overseas challenge is led by Denmark's Thomas Björn and Australia's Nick O'Hern.
Harrington, Clarke, Montgomerie and Westwood will share centre stage with personalities from the world of entertainment including Michael Douglas, Kyle MacLachlan, Jodie Kidd and Tico Torres - a mix which gives the dunhill links championship its unique character.
Also present will be a who's who of sports stars for whom golf is a passion, including past and present Ashes heroes Michael Vaughan, Andrew Strauss, Ian Botham and Steve Waugh, tennis ace Boris Becker, soccer greats Sir Bobby Charlton and Johan Cruyff, Olympic champions Sir Steve Redgrave, Sir Matthew Pinsent and Jonathan Edwards, Formula One World Champion Nigel Mansell and downhill ski legend Franz Klammer.
The professionals in the field include:
Thomas Björn Paul Lawrie Costantino Rocca
Paul Casey Sandy Lyle Charl Schwartzel
Darren Clarke Graeme McDowell Sam Torrance
Brian Davis Paul McGinley Jean Van De Velde
Darren Fichardt Colin Montgomerie Lee Westwood
David Frost Nick O'Hern Ian Woosnam
Stephen Gallacher Peter O'Malley
Padraig Harrington Ian Poulter
Among the amateurs who will be playing are:
Boris Becker Don Felder Dan Quayle
Ian Botham Sean Fitzpatrick Sir Steve Redgrave
Schalk Burger Ruud Gullit Peter Schmeichel
Sir Bobby Charlton Alan Hansen Andrew Strauss
Johan Cruyff Jodie Kidd Daniel Torrance
Kenny Dalglish Franz Klammer Tico Torres
Kapil Dev Kyle MacLachlan Michael Vaughan
Lee Dixon Nigel Mansell Steve Waugh
Michael Douglas Mark Nicholas Keith Wood
Morné du Plessis Sir Matthew Pinsent
The dunhill links championship, conceived as a celebration of links golf, will be played over three of the world's best known and respected links courses - the Old Course at St Andrews, the Championship Course at Carnoustie and the highly regarded Kingsbarns Golf Links from September 29-October 2.
168 teams of one professional and one amateur are to contest the first three rounds, with one round being played at each of the three links courses in rotation. Two competitions are played concurrently - professional individual and team.
The team score will be the best net score of the two players at each hole. After 54 holes the field reduces to the leading 60 professionals and ties plus the 20 leading teams, all of whom play the final round over the Old Course at St Andrews.
Admission to the dunhill links championship is complimentary on Thursday, Friday and Saturday of the tournament. A ticket price of £15 (concessionary £10) will be charged for Sunday. Under 16s and students are free. Parking is free. A free bus service will operate between courses. Tickets are available through the ticket hotline on 0870 010 9021 or at the entrance gates on the day.
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