Tommy Fleetwood to Host 2019 British Masters at Hillside
Despite its established and popular status on the circuit in recent years, the event's immediate future had been in significant doubt following the ending of a sponsorship partnership with Sky Sports, but the British Masters has been confirmed as being part of the European Tour Schedule for 2019, with Tommy Fleetwood serving as host in his hometown of Southport at the celebrated Hillside Golf Club.
The 27-year-old has become one of the game's truly elite players, winning the Race to Dubai in 2017, being a major part of Europe's success in the Ryder Cup at Le Golf National, and the likeable Englishman will now follow in the footsteps of Ian Poulter, Luke Donald, Lee Westwood and Justin Rose, who have attached their name to the modern history of the tournament.
"I can’t wait to host the British Masters in my home town," said Fleetwood on the European Tour Website. "It will be such an honour and I’m so grateful to have been asked.
"I’m extremely proud to follow the great ambassadors of our game who have hosted this tournament. I am very confident that Southport will make everyone welcome and the north west of England, and its love of golf, will embrace this opportunity and show support to us all."
Huge crowds at nearby Royal Birkdale for last year's Open Championship showcased the potential for this region to draw spectators through the gate, and many keen students of the game will be thrilled to see Hillside back on the European Tour following an absence of four decades, with the course widely ranking alongside the finest in the country.
Though it held a position on the schedule in October - most recently won by Eddie Pepperell at Walton Heath - the British Masters has switched to May, being played a week prior to the US PGA Championship, which has moved from its traditional August date, changing the dynamic of golf's four majors. There have been several other alterations that will catch eyes.
Included among them - as was long known - is that the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth will now be played in September, the week prior to the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. The Open de France has switched from its June date to October, essentially swapping places with the Andalucia Valderrama Masters.
Keith Waters, Chief Operating Officer of the European Tour, said: "We are delighted with our 2019 International Schedule which illustrates precisely what we are all about; namely a Tour which delivers a significant breadth and scope of global coverage in addition to taking a leading role in innovation and transformation.
"Our grateful thanks go to our co-sanctioning partners at the Asian Tour, the ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia and the Sunshine Tour, in addition to the many sponsors, partners and promoters we work with in so many different countries to deliver these world-class events."
Key Events and Dates
Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship (Rolex Series) - Jan 16- Jan 19
WGC Mexico Championship - Feb 21 - Feb 24
WGC Dell Technologies Championship - Mar 27 - Mar 30
The Masters Tournament - Apr 11 - Apr 14
British Masters hosted by Tommy Fleetwood - May 09 - May 12
US PGA Championship - May 16 - May 19
US Open Championship - Jun 13 - Jun 16
Dubai Duty Free Irish Open (Rolex Series) - Jul 04 - Jul 07
Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open (Rolex Series) - Jul 11 - Jul 14
148th Open Championship - Jul 18 - Jul 21
WGC FedEx St Jude Invitational - Jul 25 - Jul 28
BMW PGA Championship - Sep 19 - Sep 22
Alfred Dunhill Links Championship - Sep 26 - Sep 29
Italian Open (Rolex Series) - Oct 10 - Oct 13
WGC HSBC Champions - Oct 31 - Nov - 03
Turkish Airlines Open (Rolex Series) - Nov 07 - Nov 10
Nedbank Golf Challenge hosted by Gary Player (Rolex Series) - Nov 14 - Nov 17
DP World Tour Championship (Rolex Series) - Nov 21 - Nov 24
Be part of the action with a selection of unique golf tournament experiences, from playing in a pro-am with the stars to watching the action at golf’s most illustrious events. Whether it’s the Masters or The Open, The Ryder Cup or WM Phoenix Open, build your own bespoke package with the experts at Golfbreaks.com.
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Tags: european tour