Some of the best known and most enthusiastic amateur golfers join a world-class field of professionals, led by three of this year’s major championship winners, Darren Clarke, Rory McIlroy and Charl Schwartzel, for next week’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
Celebrities from the world of entertainment include film and TV stars Hugh Grant, Kyle MacLachlan and John O’Hurley. Also taking part are rock music legends Don Felder of the Eagles, Huey Lewis and Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres, plus popular radio presenter Chris Evans.
A quartet of Britain’s sporting knights – Sir Ian Botham, Sir Bobby Charlton, Sir Matthew Pinsent and Sir Steve Redgrave – lead a locker room full of sporting heroes, including Dutch football legends Johan Cruyff and Ruud Gullit, formerEnglandplayer Jamie Redknapp and Scottish defender Alan Hansen.
A strong team of cricketers will be teeing up next week. In addition to Sir Ian Botham, there will be currentEnglandcaptain Andrew Strauss and former captain Michael Vaughan, England Test players Allan Lamb and Mark Nicholas, plus Steve Waugh and Shane Warne of Australia. The immensely popular former British tennis No 1 Tim Henman will be back, along with rugby giants Morné du Plessis and Hugo Porta, Austrian downhill ski legend Franz Klammer and ten-time world surfing champion Kelly Slater.
The amateurs will be playing in one of the strongest fields ever assembled for the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. In addition to Darren Clarke, who won an emotional Open Championship at the age of 42 in July, fellow Northern Irishman Rory McIlroy, runaway winner of the US Open, and US Masters champion Charl Schwartzel from South Africa, the line-up includes current world No 1 and No 2, Luke Donald and Lee Westwood, and major championship winners Ernie Els, Retief Goosen, Padraig Harrington, Martin Kaymer, Graeme McDowell and Louis Oosthuizen.
Defending champion Martin Kaymer, who last year also won the US PGA Championship at Whistling Straits and headed the European Tour money list, will be bidding to become the first golfer to win back-to-back Alfred Dunhill Links titles.
The Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, which celebrates links golf at its finest, is 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.
With a prize fund of US$5 million, the championship incorporates two separate competitions – an individual professional tournament for the world’s leading golfers and a team event in which the professionals are paired with some of the most celebrated amateur golfers which creates a unique atmosphere.
Entrance to the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship will be FREE at all three courses on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. A ticket price of £15 (concessionary £10) will be charged for the final day’s play over the Old Course on Sunday, October 2. Entry for under 16s and students is free. Tickets are available through the ticket hotline on 0870 010 9021 or at the entrance gates.
Alfred Dunhill Links Championship www.alfreddunhilllinks.com