KLM Open. Dutch Delight as Joost Luiten Wins.

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There was Dutch delight as a jubilant Joost Luiten wins his home tournament the KLM Open at The Dutch golf course in Holland.

KLM Open

Joost Luiten / getty

Joost carded a brilliant course equaling  -8 under par 63 to win the KLM Open with a -19 under par total, his second victory at this tournament;

“The first one was special but this one is very special.”

 “To have the Dutch people behind me all week and to be able to stand here with the trophy in my hands is very special.”

“It was one of those days where everything I looked at went in the hole.”

“People talk about the zone, and I think I was in it today. I missed one shot when I went in the water on 13 but besides that I didn’t do much wrong.”

“These are the kind of days that make it all worth getting out of bed for.”

“This makes up for any disappointments this season. I had been so close to winning this year in Spain and China but to win here in front of your home support just makes you forget about all the disappointing results.”

“We will see what happens but I just want to keep this form going and see where it takes me.”

Bernd Wiesberger was second, at -18 under par, he returned a final card of -6 under 65, and had a great duel with the winner all day. He said good putting had given the opportunity to challenge for the title;

“It was a great final round but then I finished a bit sloppily unfortunately.”

“But there were so many positives out there today and I hit so many good shots that I can take a lot of positives from the week.”

“My season hasn’t been great so far this year – it certainly hasn’t been up to the standard that I would expect so this week has felt like I have turned a corner.”

“It was great to be back in contention on the back nine and nice to remind the guys that I am still around!”

“All in all it was great fun out there and the other good thing about this week was my putting.”

“That is something that I really want to take forward for the rest of the season and hopefully I can keep giving myself good chances to be in contention.”

Byeong-hun An claimed third spot, he also carded -6 under 65 in the last round for a -13 under total.

KLM Open. Scott Hend Hits The Front.

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Scott Hend hits the front in the third round of the KLM Open at The Dutch golf course in Holland.

KLM Open

Scott Hend

Scott had a -7 under par 64 in the third round of the KLM Open, which took him to the top of the leaderboard with a -14 under par total, and a one shot advantage going into the final round tomorrow. He struggled with his swing but the putting was good;

“It was just all about hanging in there today, I wasn’t really on top of it but I got the most out of it that I could.”

“The swing felt a little bit off out there today but I managed to hang in there and just stay patient and then I started hitting some really nice shots and that presented me with the opportunity to make some putts.”

Nino Bertasio is in second place at -13 under par, his third round score of -4 under par 67 keeping him in touch with the leader, he said he made a couple of monster putts today;

“It was another good solid day, I played very well again and made a couple of monster putts today which was a surprise because they all seemed to be close range yesterday.”

“I have been surprised how calm I have been out there and how much I have enjoyed this week. I just love the golf course and have been loving it out there.”

“We will see what happens tomorrow. I am really looking forward to it.”

“I know I will be playing with Scott which is great because we played together at the Olympics which was an amazing experience. We will have a good time out there tomorrow as well.”

Ben Evans, -3 under par 68 today,  David Horsey, -4 under 67, Richard Bland, -5 under 66, and top Dutch player Joost Luiten with -2 under 69, are all tied in third place at -11 under par.

Home favorite Joost is pretty happy with his position;

“It could have been a little better than two under but overall I have to be pretty happy with it.”

“I left one out there with the three-putt on 16 and the putter wasn’t as good as yesterday when I managed to hole a couple of long ones. But that is golf – some days they go in and the next they won’t so I am happy with two under.”

“It was tricky today to get close to the pins, but anything under par is good round here and I am in a pretty good position for the weekend.”

“The birdie at the last is always nice, it was great to finish like that on a positive.”

“This has been the busiest I have ever seen at a KLM Open and the crowds have been amazing.”

“It’s only Saturday today so hopefully we can have even more here tomorrow and I can get a low round going and try and win this title again because that is what I came here to do.”

South African Brandon Stone carded a brilliant course-record -8 under 63 to join  Tommy Fleetwood,-2 under 69, Simon Khan, -3 under 68 and Bernd Wiesberger, even par 71, at -10 under for the tournament.

KLM Open. Bernd Wiesberger Is In Front

 

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Bernd Wiesberger is in front in the KLM Open after 36 holes at The Dutch golf course in Holland.

KLM Open

Bernd Wiesberger / getty

Bernd carded a second round -5 under par 66 to lead the KLM Open at the half-way stage with a -10 under total, thanks mainly to some good putting;

“It was good to finally hole a couple of putts and get a score.”

“I’ve been playing alright, I’ve just not had breaks going for me, I’ve not had a good, solid week on the greens.”

“The long game has been steady but it feeds into a whole atmosphere if you can’t take advantage of that.”

“So far I’ve been really taking advantage of my chances and having a great time out there with Joost and Jake (Roos) and the support.”

Three players are tied in second place at -9 under par, Home town boy Joost Luiten, -7 under par 64 today, giving the home gallery some real hope that a Dutchman can win, Nino Bertasio from Italy, -4 under 67, and Mark Foster from England, -5 under par 66 in his second round.

Joost wants to repeat his second round score tomorrow;

“Tomorrow is a new day and I need to do the same as I did today.”

“If I can keep my irons like I hit today and create a lot of birdie chances and keep the putter warm, I’ll be alright.”

It was special out there, It was very busy from the beginning, it was a great day with the weather and the golf course is unbelievable so I’m very happy with a 64.”

“It’s great to feel the crowd behind you. The atmosphere out there was great, not only for me but for my playing partners, and that is what makes it so much fun to play in Holland.”

Nino has enjoyed a great year of golf and is looking forward to a good finish in the Race to Dubai;

“It has been a great year for me with going to the Olympics and keeping my Tour card so now I have to reset my goals and try to finish as high as I can on the Race to Dubai.” 

“I am just looking forward to tomorrow and trying to get out there and make as many birdies as I can.”

Mark is returning to form and is hoping his experience will keep him in contention;

“I am getting back to my best, I haven’t had as many playing opportunities this year but when I can play I am enjoying it.”

“I have been out here a long time and I am a lot more chilled out than I was in my prime.”

“I certainly don’t sit at home crying about not being able to play – and my wife wouldn’t let me do that anyway!”

“I love this tournament, though, so I am really looking forward to the weekend. There are some great names up there on the leaderboard so it’s going to be a good weekend and hopefully I can stay near the top.”

KLM Open. Ben Evans Leads

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Ben Evans leads after the first round of the KLM Open at The Dutch golf course in Holland.

KLM Open

Ben Evans

Ben shot a KLM Open first round-6 under par 65 to lead the competition after the first round, and said he likes the links style course, and it was an improvement in his putting that made the difference today;

“I came here on Monday and had some extra time to practice.”

“I like the course visually. It’s like an in-land links and you can see that they have done that with the decision.”

“It looks like a links course and with a lot of slopes and undulations it plays quite like a links course too.”

“I am in a similar position to what I was last year in terms of my card, I need to play well to keep it but I am confident that I can do that.”

“It only takes one good week to turn everything around and I hope this is the week.”

“I holed a lot of putts early on in the round to get me to two under and then hit a few nice wedges in close to get off to a pretty fast start.”

“The putting was the difference today – I holed a lot of mid-range putts which I haven’t been doing a lot of lately.”

Eight players are tied in second place at -5 under par following their opening rounds of 66; Byeong-hun An, Nino Bertasio, Chris Hanson, Peter Hanson, Mikko Korhonen, Joakim Lagergren, Bernd Wiesberger and Dutch amateur Rowin Caron.

They are followed by a group of 11 players on -4 under par.

Defending champion Thomas Pieters has been forced to withdraw from the competition, he was stung by a bee on Monday afternoon during a challenge match against Dutch number one Joost Luiten, who was -2 under today.

Thomas announcing on his Instagram account (Thomaspietersgolf):

“The very unfortunate worst case scenario just happened…. One bee sting on Monday during the golf challenge against @joostluitengolfer led to a major allergic reaction with flu symptoms, and forced me to pull out of my favourite tournament of the year #KLMOpen. Very sorry to all the fans that are on their way to support me and to the organisation @tgsport. I owe it to you guys to defend my title next year.”

 

KLM Open. Thomas Pieters Wins

Thomas Pieters wins the KLM Open at Kennemer Golf and Country Club in Holland.

KLM Open

Thomas Pieters / Getty Images

Thomas, from Belgium, won his second European Tour title, The KLM Open,  just two weeks after winning his first, the D+D REAL Czech Masters.

It was certainly looking like a play-off when Lee Slatery just needed to convert a four-foot putt, on the last green, to tie Thomas, but he missed.

Thomas had a final round -5 under par 65, to post a clubhouse lead of -19 under par, reporting that it was the putter that brought him victory;

“I rolled in a couple of good ones early in the round and made a really good par save on the ninth which kept the round going.”

“I’m really, really happy. I felt like I played better in the Czech Republic, but my short game was great this week and saved me many times.” 

“I had chances coming in and I felt like I needed to make a couple more. I feel bad for Lee as he played great.”

“It wasn’t comfortable watching him play the last couple of holes. I was wishing I’d made one more birdie. I’m really happy overall with the week and how I played and it’s nice going forward from here.”

“It feels like this win was harder work than in Czech. I didn’t hit the ball as well. I had a week off in between and did some hard work. There’s plenty to work on, but I’m just happy that I won again so soon.” 

“It’s special winning here, just down the road from home. It was great hearing all the Dutch fans cheering my name and getting behind me, so thanks to them.”

“Our two countries kind of stick together. I’m really happy that my family was here again, too.”

Lee Slattery, from England and Eduardo de la Riva, from Spain, tied in second place at -18 under par. Lee carding a last round -2 under par 68, while Eduardo showed how it should be done, -7 under par 63.

Lee explained how he missed his chance of winning, but still enjoyed the week;

“I went into today with a great chance of winning, and I feel like I’ve done everything right really apart from pull that last putt a little bit left.”

“I played some great golf again and it’s given me a lot of confidence.”  

“To play at the level I have done this week, with a lot of top players in the field, and nearly get the job done is really pleasing and encouraging.” 

“To leave myself 75 feet to two-putt for a play-off is asking a lot, it was a lot of pressure.”

“I didn’t hit a great putt on that second one, I’ve got to be honest, but it was probably the first time this week I’ve felt under pressure. Well done to Thomas, he’s a great player.”

“It sets up everything now for the end of the year. I can start preparing for the bigger events at the end of the season.”

“I’ve got a great feeling inside and I’ll be comforted by my family at home, we’ve got a big celebration next week for the win in Russia.”

“A lot of great things have happened these last two weeks and I’ve just got to enjoy it.”

Eduardo said he had played well all week, especially with the putter;

“I played very well today, and all week actually. I’ve been very solid from tee to green and today I was very strong with the putter. I’m very happy to finish with a 63.”

“I knew that I needed a very low round today, but I stuck to my game and just tried to take my chances when they came along. I saw the leaderboards but I was trying not to pay too much attention to them.”

 

KLM Open. Rafael Cabrera-Bello and Lee Slattery Lead.

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Rafael Cabrera-Bello and Lee Slattery have the 54 hole lead at the KLM Open in Holland.

KLM Open KLM Open

Rafael Cabrera-Bello and Lee Slattery / Getty Images

Rafa and Lee both carded third rounds of -7 under par 63, to lead the KLM Open at Kennemer Golf & Country Club with -16 under par totals.

Rafa had a day of tap in birdies, in a mixed bag he also recorded a bogey;

“I sunk a very long putt on the first hole and after that all the other birdies were pretty much tap-ins.” 

“Even the bogey I had was a three-putt from five feet, so it could’ve been better, but I’m really pleased that everything went my way.”

“It was a bonus to hole my third shot for eagle on the seventh. I just threw my club up in the air because I didn’t know how to celebrate! I wasn’t expecting that.”

“It wasn’t frustrating making nine pars in a row. The only hole I felt I gave a shot away was the 12th.

“I hit a perfect drive in the middle of the fairway and had a six iron into the green but made a really poor shot. It’s a par five so I was expecting to make birdie there.”

“The rest of the holes I played well but the putts didn’t drop. It could’ve been one or two better but I’ll take 63.”

“It’s very exciting for tomorrow and it looks like I’ll be in the last group with Lee. Being in the final group on the last day is always an honor and very exciting.”

“I’ve felt this year I’ve been in this position more often than ever before in my career. It’s not always worked out, but I’m learning from my mistakes and working on them.”

“The more I put myself in that position the more comfortable I’ll be and the better I’ll play, simple!”

Lee, last week’s M2M Russian Open champion, also had a bogey on the day, but was very happy with his position, and a bit of luck coming his way;

“It’s like a dream come true at the minute. I went into last week with a lot of pressure on and won, and then I’ve come here with no pressure whatsoever and just been trying to play good golf.” 

“It’s a fabulous feeling and I feel a lot more relaxed this week than I was last week.”

“My first win in 2011 took a lot out of me because it was after years and years and years of hard work, and it was a lifetime ambition to win a European Tour event.”

“That was a special moment for me, but last week meant a lot to several other people as well, so that made it more special in some ways. It’s just been a lot of hard work and it’s finally paying off.”

“A lot of things went my way today. At 12 it looked like it was going to stay at the back of the green, which would have been a really difficult putt, but it rolled back down to about 15 feet and I managed to knock it in for eagle.”

“You need bits of luck when you do well in tournaments, so I’ll take them.”
Paul Lawrie is in third position, just one shot back at -15 under par, he had a bogey free -7 under par 63.

The leaderboard is very compacted, with five players within three shots of the lead, so it is really all up for grabs tomorrow, a great low round will win it.

KLM Open. Two Share 1st Round Lead

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Two players share the first round lead at the KLM Open on the Kennemer Golf and Country Club course in Holland. Paul Lawrie and Wade Ormsby both set the pace with magical scores of 61.

KLM Open KLM Open

Paul Lawrie and Wade Ormsby / Getty Images

Paul and Wade both shot bogey free opening rounds of -9 under par 61 t the KLM Open in Holland.

Paul was thinking of the 59, but was very happy to settle for a 61;

“The 59 did cross my mind.”

“I had a long putt on the seventh, my 16th, for eagle after a lovely three wood in there, and had that popped in there I would have only had to birdie one of the last two to make it.”

“It was at the back of my mind, but I’m very happy with 61.”

“Sixty-one, it sounds good, doesn’t it? I played very nicely and putted very well again.” 

“My previous best was 63 in the third round of the Dunhill Links when I won. I was ten under after 12 holes that day and shot nine under.” 

“A nine under round there on that day with the wind picking up in the afternoon, was a good knock. Any time you’re nine under, in fact, is a decent effort.”

“I hit a lot of really good shots and it couldn’t have been much lower than that.”

“I’m usually moaning that I could have been three or four less, but that was pretty much all I could have got.” 

Wade was coming back from a long vacation in Australia, and must have been practicing with his putter, it worked like a dream;

“I’ve had five weeks off back in Australia and it’s nice to get back and on the front foot.”

“It was nice to finish like that. I had a hot putter there at the end, which made things a bit easier.” 

“I was getting a bit frustrated as I was hitting it really close but not holing anything, but I kept on giving myself good chances on the right side and eventually they started rolling in.”

“The wind only died down on the last three or four holes so it was tough out there. I said to Rich (Green) that we’d got the wrong side of the draw, but I’m not complaining now.” 

“That’s the lowest score I’ve had in any round, let alone tournament golf. I’ve worked pretty hard the last few weeks.”

Richard Bland is in third place, he carded a bogey free -8 under par 62, so I guess this is going to be a very low scoring tournament.

Richard was delighted to score 62, knowing he had not left any shots out on the course today;

“It’s nice to come off thinking I haven’t left any shots out there.”

“I hit a lot of good shots out there. It’s always nice to make a good start. It wasn’t easy, we probably had a two club wind most of the day. I gave myself some good chances and I’m really pleased with that.”

“I hit a good tee shot on the sixth just short of the green and pitched it in from 40 yards for an eagle two. Those are always a bonus.”

“It felt like most things went my way, when recently it’s felt the opposite and I haven’t got much out of rounds.” 

“It puts me in a good position but there’s a long way to go and I’m going to have to go a lot deeper, knowing the way the course is playing and how many great players are here.”

Englishmen James Morrison, David Horsey and Robert Rock,  joined the home favourite Joost Luiten and Argentina’s Estanislao Goya, all tied in fourth place with rounds of -7 under par 63.