Highs and lows for Danish golf as 28 qualify for 2020 European Tour

Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images

Highs and lows for Danish golf as 28 qualify for 2020 European Tour

Golf

Highs and lows for Danish golf as 28 qualify for 2020 European Tour

By

There was good news and bad news for Danish golf at the conclusion of the European Tour Qualifying School. Danes earned two of the 28 cards awarded for the 2020 European Tour, but one Danish golfer missed out while his twin brother cashed in.

Copenhagen resident Benjamin Poke took the first card by six shots. Eighteen-year-old countryman Rasmus Højgaard joined him by finishing joint fifth. However, Rasmus’s twin brother, Nicolia, fell five shots short. The Rasmus boys were trying to become the first twin brothers to play on the European circuit.

Veteran Frenchman Gregory Havret, who finished second in the 2010 U.S. Open, finished second. Spain’s Alejandro Canizares, who won the 2003 NCAA Championship while at Arizona State, placed third.

Poke returned a 7-under 64 to finish the six-round marathon on 25 under par. The 27 year old should get enough tournaments next season to retain his playing rights for 2021.

“To play on the European Tour is something that you always dream about when you are young, so to finally stand here with my card is unbelievable,” Poke said.

Poke finished 29th on the European Challenge Tour money list this season in his rookie year on Europe’s junior circuit.

“I’m planning to celebrate this moment for a while,” Poke said. “You work so hard and then there are times when you are struggling and it’s not easy, but you’ve got to get up and carry on and celebrate the good times when they happen.”

Rasmus Højgaard closed out the six-round examination with consecutive 66s to finish 16 under. Nicolai could only manage a 1-over 72 to finish at 7-under when the mark was 12 under.

“It feels amazing to have my European Tour card,” Rasmus said. “I kind of knew once Nicolai was on the back nine that he wasn’t going to get his card. It’s sad that he isn’t going to get his card and that we won’t be together on the European Tour next year, but that’s just how it is sometimes.”

Other notables earning cards were former Tennessee player and 2013 British Amateur champion Garrick Porteous. The Englishman finished on 14 under.

Veteran Welsh player Bradley Dredge, a two-time European Tour winner, finished on 13 under to qualify.

Northern Ireland’s Jonathan Caldwell, who partnered Rory McIlroy in the 2007 Walker Cup, also finished on 13 under to join McIlroy on next year’s tour.

Sweden’s Niklas Lemke, another Arizona State grad, returned a closing 5-under 66 to qualify for the second straight year after nine failed attempts. He finished on 12 under to take one of the last four cards.

Americans Sihwan Kim and Johannes Veerman were among the 28, while first round leader John Catlin from Sacramento missed out.

The good news for those who failed is that any player who made the 72-hole cut automatically receives a 2020 Challenge Tour card.

Latest

More Golfweek
Home