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Italian Open 2024 Preview, Picks & Analysis

By: | Mon 24 Jun 2024

After winning the KLM Open, Guido Migliozzi will have an added incentive as he attempts to claim the Italian Open.

He is a mercurial talent and would love nothing more than to win his home open. 

The Italian enjoyed a fantastic amateur career, representing Italy on numerous occasions in elite events such as the Eisenhower Trophy and winning individual high-profile amateur events including the Portuguese International Amateur and the European Nations Cup. 

Migliozzi enjoyed success on the satellite Alps Tour, winning three times on that circuit between 2017 and 2018. He claimed his first DP World Tour title at the 2019 Magical Kenya Open in his debut season, having secured the 16th card at Qualifying School Final Stage four months earlier. He then went on to defeat Darius van Driel by four strokes in the final of the 2019 Belgian Knockout to collect his second-career win on the DP World Tour Tour and a second win of his rookie campaign. Having qualified for the US Open in 2021 he produced arguably the best performance of his career to date by finishing in a tie for fourth. 

He came up with a sensational final round to win the French Open at Le Golf National, bridging a three-year gap between victories. He posted the lowest final round in the tournament’s 104-year history, a nine-under par 62. He was also the first player to be signed by pop star Niall Horan's management company Modest! Golf.  

He should have won the 2024 European Open but the wheels came off in the final round as he took 78 shots to finish in a tie for eighth place. He has been guilty of inconsistency throughout his professional career but in successive starts finished second at the China Open, tied 24th at the Soudal Open and tied eighth at the European Open. 

Guido Migliozzi

(Image Credit: Kevin Diss Photography)

Another serious home hope is comeback man Matteo Manassero, who won the Jonsson Workwear earlier this season. He is a man who has experienced the highs and lows of professional golf.

Manassero was born on April 19, 1993 in Verona and started playing golf aged three with a set of plastic clubs. At 16 he became the youngest winner of the Amateur Championship in 2009 before taking the silver medal for low amateur in the 2009 Open Championship, where he partnered eventual runner-up Tom Watson and Spain’s Sergio Garcia for the first two rounds. He finished in a tie for 13th place.

He broke another record in April 2010 when he became the youngest player to make the cut at The Masters, where he finished in a tie for 36th place - the best performance by a European amateur for 73 years. He turned professional and became the youngest winner in European Tour history with victory in the 2010 Castello Masters at 17 years and 188 days and was named rookie of the year.

In 2011 Manassero secured his second win at the Malaysian Open at the age of 17 years and 363 days, making him first and second on the list of youngest DP World Tour winners. After winning the Singapore Open in 2012 he became the first teenager to win three times. He also collected a second place at the Andalucia Open and had five more top 10 finishes.

In 2013, Manassero won the biggest tournament of his career, the BMW PGA Championship, with a birdie at the fourth extra hole of a playoff against Simon Khan and Marc Warren, becoming the youngest-ever winner of this tournament. With the win Manassero gained the right to play in the 2013 US Open and entered the top 30 of the world rankings. He also managed to further improve his final Order of Merit position with an 11th place. Then it all began to go wrong. He managed just one top-10 finish in 2014 and missed 16 cuts in 2015. He eventually lost his playing privileges on the DP World Tour but won twice on the Challenge Tour in 2023 to regain his card. And he is certain to be inspired by playing in front of a home crowd.

There will be a new champion this week. Twelve months ago Adrian Meronk won the Italian Open at Marco Simone Golf Club, which went on to host the Ryder Cup. He believed that his success in Italy was going to help him secure a spot on Luke Donald’s European team. 

However, Donald chose to give the nod to young sensation Ludvig Aberg. It turned out to be an inspirational move, but it left a foul taste in Meronk’s mouth and may have been instrumental in his decision to defect to LIV Golf. The Pole kept his composure to hold off French duo Romain Langasque and Julien Guerrier at Marco Simone Golf & Country club to win by one shot. 

Tournament Winners:

It was won in 2015 by Rikard Karlberg, in 2016 by Francesco Molinari, in 2017 by Tyrrell Hatton, in 2018 by Thorbjorn Olesen, in 2019 by Bernd Wiesberger, in 2020 by Ross McGowan, in 2021 by Nicolai Hojgaard, in 2022 by Robert MacIntyre and last year by Adrian Meronk.

The Course:

Adriatic Golf Club is a par 70 measuring 6,950 yards. It meanders through tree-lined fairways. There is a lot of water and some fabulous bunkering. The weather is certain to be glorious and you can expect to see some low scoring.

Form Guide:

Apart from his win in South Africa this year, Matteo Manassero has also recorded a tied fifth at the South African Open and Indian Open and was 13th at the Soudal Open. He will love playing in front of an enthusiastic home gallery.

To Win:

Matteo Manassero. Should be inspired

Each Way:

Guido Migliozzi. Will go for everything

Each Way:

Tom McKibbin. Does everything well

Five to Follow:

Matteo Manassero. Just about back to his very best

Guido Migliozzi. On his day can beat anybody

Tom McKibbin. Terrific iron player

Ewen Ferguson. Overdue another big week

Rikuya Hoshino. Hugely gifted

Five Outsiders to Watch:

Shubhankar Sharma. Trying to recapture past glories

Marcus Armitage. Can go very low

Scott Jamieson. You never know what you are going to get

Andrew Johnston. At peace with himself

Bernd Wiesberger. Trying to rediscover his putting touch

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Tags: Golf Previews european tour dp world tour

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