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KLM Open 2024 Preview, Picks & Analysis

By: | Mon 17 Jun 2024

The DP World Tour returns to Europe after a two-week break, with England’s Matt Wallace and American Luke List in the field for the KLM Open at The International near Amsterdam.

Wallace and List, both ranked among the top 100 players in the world, will compete against defending champion Pablo Larrazabal, home favourites Joost Luiten and Darius van Driel, and DP World Tour winners Rasmus Hojgaard, Matteo Manassero, and Dylan Frittelli.

Englishman Wallace has enjoyed success on both the DP World Tour and the PGA Tour, with his breakout year being 2018, with three wins on the DP World Tour.

In 2019, he finished third in the US PGA Championship, earning his PGA Tour card. Since then, he has won in the States, claiming victory at the Corales Puntacana Championship last year.

Wallace has fond memories of the KLM Open at The International, where he finished third in 2019 with a course record 63. He has enjoyed some fine form in 2024 and has said that he is absolutely determined to play his way into Luke Donald’s Ryder Cup team to take on the USA next year.

American List, who is one of the biggest hitters in the game, has won twice on the PGA Tour and has earned more than $17 million in prize money.

Coming from an athletic family of top swimmers, List chose golf over swimming and after a stellar amateur career, highlighted by reaching the final of the US Amateur Championship and making the cut at the Masters as an amateur, he quickly found success on the American circuits.

Last year, he won his second PGA Tour title at the Farmers Insurance Open and this season finished tied for second at the Genesis Invitational. This year, List will make his debut at the KLM Open.

Daan Slooter, KLM Open Tournament Director, expressed his excitement: "We are thrilled to have succeeded in bringing two more top players to the Netherlands. The two highest-ranked players on the world rankings have impressive track records and are in excellent form this year. Matt has a special connection with the KLM Open, and we share that sentiment! He wouldn't miss it for anything. For Luke, it's a rare foray onto the DP World Tour, and we hope he thoroughly enjoys his time here."

Larrazabal, a nine-time winner on the DP World Tour, will be attempting to successfully defend the title he won last year. 

After his victory in 2023, the 40-year-old recounted the many Spanish players on the trophy and in particular talked about his friend and mentor Ramon Sota, who won the Open in 1966 and 1971. "Winning the KLM Open was a dream come true," said Larrazábal. "To have my name on the trophy with all these fantastic players is what we play for. I'm proud to be another Spanish winner following the likes of Seve, Jose Maria, Miguel Angel and my mentor Ramon Sota. I can't wait to get back and try to defend my title!"

Pablo Larrazabal

(Image Credit: Kevin Diss Photography)

Eight Spaniards have won this title, with the legendary Seve Ballesteros doing so on three occasions.

This is also a big week for Sebastian Soderberg. The Swede blew an eight-shot lead at the recent Scandinavian Mixed, missing a tiddler on the final green that would have got him into a playoff. 

He has been a model of consistency this season, finishing second at the Hero Indian Open and ISPS Handa Championship and third at the China Open and Mauritius Open and started the Scandinavian Mixed in fifth place in the Race to Dubai. But it will be fascinating to see what impact that final-round collapse in Sweden has had on him.

Tournament Winners:

It was won in 2015 by Thomas Pieters, in 2016 by Joost Luiten, in 2017 by Romain Wattel, in 2018 by Ashun Wu, in 2019 by Sergio Garcia, in 2021 by Kristoffer Broberg, in 2022 by Victor Perez and last year by Pablo Larrazabal. There was no tournament in 2020 because of the pandemic.

The Course:

Designed by Ian Woosnam and opened in 2012, The International is located close to Schipol Airport - some would say too close! The greens are large and undulating and the course also features plenty of water hazards and bunkers, several dog legs and a number of blind shots. It is a par 73 measuring 7,286 yards and promises to be a tough test.

Form Guide:

If you put the final round of the Scandinavian Mixed to one side, the form player is Sebastian Soderberg. But can he put his Swedish nightmare behind him? This week will tell us a great deal about Soderberg.

To Win:

Matt Wallace. Exciting to watch

Each Way:

Rasmus Hojgaard. Proven winner

Each Way:

Joost Luiten. Will be inspired by Dutch fans

Five to Follow:

Matt Wallace.  Can make birdies for fun

Rasmus Hojgaard. Ready to win again

Joost Luiten. Brilliant putter

Luke List. Hits the ball a mile

Alex Fitzpatrick. Making steady progress

Five Outsiders to Watch:

Darius van Driel. Dutch courage

Wil Besseling. Another home hope

Oliver Wilson. You never know what you are going to get

Eddie Pepperell. A real conundrum

Justin Harding. Still struggling for fitness

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Tags: Golf Previews european tour dp world tour

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