Nicolas Colsaerts thrives in front of home crowd at Belgian Knockout

Warren Little/Getty Images

Nicolas Colsaerts thrives in front of home crowd at Belgian Knockout

Euro Tour

Nicolas Colsaerts thrives in front of home crowd at Belgian Knockout

The pressure is on Nicolas Colsaerts. The 2012 Ryder Cup star carries home hopes into the final day of the $1.2 million Belgian Knockout at Rinkven International Golf Club in Antwerp.

The man nicknamed “The Dude” is the last remaining Belgian left in the draw after tournament host Thomas Pieters, former Illinois player Thomas Detry and Christopher Mivis all lost in the round of 64.

Colsaerts defeated Richie Ramsay, Lorenzo Gagli and Joachim B Hansen in the nine-hole stroke play knockout competition to earn a quarterfinal match against England’s James Heath.

“I’m enjoying this a lot,” Colsaerts said. “It’s pretty cool when you play well in front of home crowds like this. A lot of people have turned up. You can feel the good vibe and when you pull it off, it’s actually quite a cool feeling.” 

The other three quarterfinal matches feature Mike Lorenzo-Vera against fellow Frenchman Benjamin Hebert. Their compatriot Victor Perez takes on Scotland’s David Drysdale, while No. 1 seed Jorge Campillo and Adrian Otaegui go head-to-head in an all-Spanish affair.

Colsaerts is a two- time European Tour winner, but hasn’t won since 2012 when he made his Ryder Cup appearance. The 37-year-old sparkled in that match, recording seven birdies and an eagle alongside Lee Westwood to defeat Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker in the Friday fourballs. That seemed to herald a run in the biennial match, but the closest the long hitting Belgian has come to a return is acting as a TV commentator in subsequent contests. 

Heath has never lived up to the hype he showed in amateur golf when he won the English Amateur and Lytham Trophy in 2004. The Englishman shattered the 72-hole scoring record in the latter event, going around the Open Championship course in 18 under, four shots better than Tom Lehman’s 1996 tally en route to winning the old claret jug. 

Heath, who had a brief spell at Augusta State, is still looking to gain traction on the European Tour after years on the Challenge Tour, where he has two wins.

Latest

More Golfweek
Home