As the Ryder Cup looms large, the European Tour is in Holland this week for the KLM Open at Hilversumsche Golf Club. Simon Dyson defends the title while Martin Kaymer and Louis Oosthuizen are in the field.
The tournament returns to Hilversumsche Golf Club in Hilversum for the first time since 2005, a club that has hosted the Dutch Open on 15 occasions since it became a European Tour event in 1972.
It’s a historic course dating from 1910 when the original nine holes were laid out. Harry Colt added nine more in 1928 and, since then, Sir Guy Campbell and Kyle Phillips have made further alterations and improvements.
The Dutch Open also has a great history. It was first contested back in 1912 when Englishman George Pannell was victorious. Since then many famous professionals have claimed the title. They include, J.H Taylor, Bobby Locke, Roberto De Vicenzo, Seve Ballesteros, Bernhard Langer and Colin Montgomerie.
Last season England’s Simon Dyson came through a sudden-death playoff against Peter Hedblom of Sweden and Ireland’s Peter Lawrie. Dyson sank a long birdie putt on the first extra hole to secure the title for the second time. He was also champion in 2006.
Dyson will have his work cut out if he’s to make it a hat-trick of victories in Holland as a strong field will assemble at the Hilversumsche Golf Club. USPGA winner Martin Kaymer and Open champion Louis Oosthuizen are on the start sheet along with other Ryder Cup team members Ross Fisher and Francesco Molinari.

Venue: Hilversumsche Golf Club, The Netherlands
Date: Sep 9-12
Course stats: par 70, 6,906 yards
Purse: €1,800,000 Winner: €300,000
Defending Champion: Simon Dyson (-15)

TV Coverage:
Thursday 9 – Live on Sky Sports 3 from 10.30am
Friday 10 – Live on Sky Sports 3 from 10.30am
Saturday 11 – Live on Sky Sports 4 from 12.30pm
Sunday 12 – Live on Sky Sports 3 from 12.30pm

Player Watch:
Francesco Molinari – Brother Edoardo has stolen the limelight somewhat in recent weeks and Francesco will be keen to prove his credentials pre-Ryder Cup. An unerringly straight driver of the ball, this short, tight course should suit his game well.

Simon Dyson – Disappointed to miss out on Ryder Cup selection, the Englishman will be keen to show why he could have been a valuable member of the team. With two wins in this event since 2006, he clearly enjoys playing on Dutch soil.

Martin Kaymer – The German makes his first European Tour start since his victory in the USPGA Championship. He’s currently number 1 in the Race to Dubai and sixth on the Official World Golf Ranking. He’ll be the man to beat this week.

Key hole: 18th. At just 499 yards, this is a par 5 that’s reachable for every player in the field. It’s relatively tight but there are no real hazards to contend with. Eagles will be scored here and it could mean dramatic swings right at the end of the tournament.

Skills required: Accuracy. At under 7,000 yards this is a course where “the bombers” won’t have such an advantage. Watch for one of the shorter, straighter hitters to emerge from the pack.