Star duo sign-on for first-ever Scottish Open to take place in East Lothian this coming July
Luke Donald and Matt Kuchar have become the latest big names to confirm their participation in this year’s Scottish Open at Gullane.
Englishman Donald won the 2011 tournament at Castle Stuart Golf Links near Inverness, the same year that US ace Kuchar made the most recent of his three prior appearances in the event.
Donald, 37, has a superb record in the Scottish Open, having finished in the top five in each of his first three appearances, before winning at the fourth attempt.
Needless to say, then, he is relishing the prospect of teeing it up as the Scottish Open moves to East Lothian for the first time in its history, with the Open Championship at St Andrews taking place the following week.
“I’ve tended to do well in the Scottish Open whenever I’ve played the tournament in the past, so I’ll obviously be very keen to continue that good run this year,” said the former world No.1, pictured right. “I got the chance to play Gullane last year and really enjoyed it, so I’m looking forward to going back and teeing it up competitively.
“The Scottish golf fans are very knowledgeable and respectful of the game which, as well as the great courses, is one of the main reasons why I enjoy playing the tournament so much. Hopefully I can have another good week and fine tune my game before the Open.”
Meanwhile, world No.14 Kuchar will be bidding to secure his first victory in a regular European Tour event when he heads to East Lothian.
Seven times a winner on the PGA Tour, the 37-year-old admits he is desperate to follow in the footsteps of his compatriot and Ryder Cup teammate Phil Mickelson, who, in 2013, became the third American to win the event.
“I love everything about Scotland, so I didn’t need any persuading to play the Scottish Open this year,” said Kuchar, 37. “It’s the ‘Home of Golf’ and I believe Gullane is a fabulous course, so I’m excited about my trip there. After seeing what Phil [Mickelson] did in 2013, when he won at Castle Stuart the week before winning the Open, I think a lot of Americans thought that getting some links practice in at the Scottish Open made a lot of sense.
“I really enjoy the challenge of links golf, because it’s very different to what we play every week on the PGA Tour, so I’m really looking forward to testing myself at Gullane.”