Saturday evening at The Montgomerie Maxx Royal saw Colin Montgomerie, the host course designer, welcome guests to his on course villa on the eve of the final round of the inaugural Turkish Airlines Open. With a leaderboard perfectly poised for a tense finale tomorrow, Monty played the perfect host and was dressed in full Maxx Royal chef clothing as he took his place behind the grill.
“To be able to welcome everyone tonight on the eve of what will be a historic Sunday in Turkey is a great thrill,” commented Colin Montgomerie, eight-time European Tour Order of Merit Winner. “Whilst the event is taking place on a course I designed with the team from EGD (European Golf Design), I thought it would be fun to invite everyone over to my place for a barbecue to celebrate what has been a very enjoyable week.
“It has been great to see the course challenge the players. The rain earlier in the week softened the greens and we have seen some very low scoring as a result. Seeing lots of birdies is exciting through, and Ben Lovett and his team have done a wonderful job and to prepare the course in such incredible condition; I can’t compliment them enough.”
Looking ahead to the tournament tomorrow, Monty was rich in praise for the current tournament leader, but stressed the quality of the players chasing Dubuisson, “Victor has played some sensational golf so far this week, and to go out in the final group this morning and start with four consecutive birdies shows how composed and confident he is feeling. He has some great players right behind him though, and it will take another great round to finish on top. Stenson could well be his main challenger; he is in such command of his game right now and on a high after his FEDEX Cup Play-Off victory. You can’t count out Ian (Poulter) and Tiger is Tiger.
“It is also great to see such depth of talent out on the European Tour. We have youngsters from around the world plying their trade and blossoming into impressive players. We need to continue to support new events and present the opportunity for the next generation to compete against the current crop of stars. Turkey and all involved should be very proud in what has been created.”
Guests included dignitaries from some of the event sponsors, including Turkish Airlines, The Ministry of Culture and Tourism for Turkey, The European Tour and the world’s media. The host for the evening was Colin, who was joined by Maxx Royal owner, Memet Ersoy.
“This week will live long in our memories and to have such a strong leaderboard heading into tomorrow is testament to the appeal of hosting a European Tour event,” commented Ersoy. “Colin has been very kind to host us this evening and has been very sporting in his culinary efforts. He has designed an iconic golf course for Turkey and he is always welcome here at the Maxx Royal.”
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