ST ANDREWS, September 21, 2023 – Major Champion Matt Fitzpatrick and popular American Matt Kuchar are among new entries for next month’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
2022 US Open winner Fitzpatrick, currently world No.8, said: “I’m delighted to be returning to the Old Course next month for the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. St Andrews is really special to me and it will be a fun place to be right after the Ryder Cup. Looking forward to a memorable week.”
Among the other big names in the field seeking the prestigious title are two-time winner Padraig Harrington, Tommy Fleetwood, Billy Horschel, Danny Willett and local hero Bob MacIntyre, the leading Scot in the world rankings, who came so close in July to winning the Genesis Scottish Open.
It is a fair guess that all the leading contenders will be looking over their shoulders at Ryan Fox, returning to St Andrews to defend his 2022 Alfred Dunhill Links title, after his dramatic win in the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth last weekend.
New Zealander Fox said: “To win the BMW PGA was a special moment in my life. I now feel I have the chance to make even more significant steps forward in my career.
“But, believe me, I will never underestimate the importance of winning the Alfred Dunhill Links last year. That victory made me realise that I could win at the highest level, and encouraged me in my plans to play more events around the world.
“Right now, it goes without saying the next wonderful thing that could happen to me is to defend my Dunhill title at St Andrews, and that’s what I’ll be looking to do.”
There will also be a special welcome at St Andrews for David Howell who will be enjoying a double celebration at St Andrews. Not only is it the tenth anniversary of his famous 2013 Alfred Dunhill Links victory, but he will be creating a new record for the number of appearances in European / DP World Tour events.
Howell is playing in this week’s French Open which is his 721st event, equalling Miguel Angel Jimenez’s record, which means he will create a new record at the Alfred Dunhill Links.
With a prize fund of US$5 million, the Championship incorporates two separate competitions - an Individual Professional event for the world's leading golfers and the Team Championship in which the professionals are paired with amateur golfers, creating a unique atmosphere.
A high class group of sportsmen will be picking up their golf clubs to partner the professionals. Linking up again at St Andrews will be the formidable England fast bowling duo, Jimmy Anderson and the now retired Stuart Broad, who bowed out after taking the last two Australian wickets in this summer’s Ashes series.
Other former England cricketers on the tee rather than at the crease will be Kevin Pietersen, Allan Lamb and Mark Nicholas, who captained the England A team in Zimbabwe in 1990.
Among the other global names of sport who will be playing at St Andrews are Dutch football super star Ruud Gullit, record-breaking Olympic rower Sir Steve Redgrave, who has played in every Alfred Dunhill Links since 2001, and Sir Tony (A.P) McCoy, the great National Hunt jockey.
"Sir Tony said: "Having the opportunity to play in this very special Championship has given me enormous pleasure over the years. It's such a wonderful experience to be able to share the courses with so many great professionals. I've met some great people."
Playing in the Team Championship for the first time are the Springboks Rugby World Cup winning flanker Schalk Burger Jnr and Denver Broncos John Elway, one of the greatest quarterbacks in the history of American Football.
Burger said: "It's a thrill to be invited to play in the Alfred Dunhill Links. My Dad has played for many years and has told me how much fun it is. He's also told me how amazing the courses are and as someone who loves golf my anticipation levels are epic."
Elway said: “I’m really looking forward to playing at St Andrews. You can’t imagine anywhere more different to Denver’s Mile High Stadium where I played with the Broncos. But they are both iconic sporting venues and it will be a joy to take part in the Alfred Dunhill Links. I am delighted to have been invited.”