20th February 2020 | Alps Tour Golf

Keunen Captures the Ein Bay Open Title

Suez (Egypt), February 20, 2020 – The Dutchman, Lars Keunen, continued his week of steady golf to win the Ein Bay Open 2020 here at Sokhna Golf Club with a -12 (204) for the 54 holes.

This is his third season on the Alps Tour but his first win since turning professional. His previous best was second position in March 2019, again in Egypt, at the New Giza Open.

He finished the first round in third place then moved up to second after 36 holes and then took the first place today, four points clear of the nearest contender. Obviously thrilled to finally lift a trophy after a difficult 2019 season:

“I was just saying to some of the other guys that I missed the last six cuts. I started well last season but then went down towards the end. But the last couple of months I’ve been getting better.”

He also stated that he had changed a lot of things in his game:

“I’ve never hit a fade in my life but now I hit them all the time. I’m also practicing better and believe that if I practice well then, the results will come by themselves. “

And indeed, they did today. With a bogey-free round and four birdies he shot a 68 (-4) for the day. His play was pretty regular over the three rounds with a first round 66 (-6) without a bogey on the horizon and a second round 70 (-2) where he counter-balanced his 3 bogeys with four birdies and an eagle.

The English player, Sam Robinson, roared up the score board today moving to joint second place from fifteenth. With 5 birdies, an eagle on the par 5 15th and just one bogey he came into the clubhouse with -8 (208) for the tournament after an excellent 66 (-6) today.

He is joined by Tomas Santos Silva from Portugal, also with -8 (208). Having scored par 72 today, he maintained his position from yesterday.

In fourth place is rookie Jeong Weon Ko. The French player was joint leader after day one and his two succeeding rounds of par 72 saw him finish at –7 (209).

Vitor Londot Lopes from Portugal takes the fifth place with -6 (210) after also shooting a 66 (-6) today which rocketed him up from yesterday’s twenty-third place.

In joint sixth place at -5 (211) are the two Spanish players Victor Pastor Rufian, yesterday’s leader and Angel Hidalgo Portillo.

The players now have just two days before the next tournament, the Red Sea Little Venice Open which starts on 23rd February. This is also taking place here at Sokhna Golf Club but on Courses B & C. They play a little shorter, 6641 yards/6073 metres, than the Ein Bay Open A & B combination, 6963 yards/6367 metres.

With the weather forecast to continue in the same vein, warm and sunny, the second tournament of the season looks set to be off to a great start.

 

Results: click here

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1st April 2019 | Alps Tour Golf

Rookie Scalise is the Master of New Giza

It took only four tournaments to Italian rookie Lorenzo Scalise to catch his first win as a pro in the first edition of New Giza Open, on the spectacular New Giza course in Cairo (Egypt), with a total of -12 and one stroke advantage, the same he had after the second round. It was not an easy path for Scalise, though, because Dutch Lars Keunen had no intention of giving up at any time, after he signed a 65 yesterday, and so they went head-to-head scoring both 70 (-2) on the last round ; Spaniard Xavi Puig Giner popped up from behind – he was tied 9th at -4 after 36 holes – matching the course record 65 and joining the two leaders for a short time, and then settling for second place tied with Keunen.

Scalise, 23, turned pro at the end of last year and gained access to the Alps Tour at the Qualifying School last December with a category 6 which gave him right to play all the tournaments in the 2019 schedule, and now he has jumped to category 1 – those  of winners. « If it had been the first round, I must say I wouldn’t be too happy about my game because it was kind of crappy at times – said Scalise – I hit two balls in the water on 11 and 14, but in the end I won the tournament! So I’m really happy and it was a good fight until the end, when the birdie on 17 gave me the advantage I needed to win. It is such a nice feeling, last time I won it was back in 2017 as an amateur, a college tournament in the U.S.A., so being able to be solid at the beginning of my pro career makes me very happy ».

Keunen, 21, is on his second season as a pro, and last year had two top 5 out of 12 tournaments played : « Today it was a really close fight between Lorenzo and me, and when on 13th we saw that another player had reached us on -11 I told myself ‘come on, we’re going to catch that guy !’. In the end Lorenzo finished one stroke better than us, a well deserved win for him. It was a very good tournament in all, on a great course with probably the best conditions we’ve ever had on Alps Tour lately ».

Xavier Puig Giner, 30, from Barcelona (Spain), scored a bogeyfree round : « I knew there were many players in contention, and that with a lot of wind anything could happen, so the chip in at the first hole gave me a lot of confidence. I really played well the whole round, always on the fairway with my drives and on the greens in regulations, I’ve also made a very long putt from 15 metres ; it was one of those days when all goes well. I worked especially on the mental side of the game, sometimes you need to forget about the result and concentrate shot by shot, and I’m happy because I was able to do that and finish with a birdie on 18 » – so to tie the course record 65 (-7) signed yesterday by Keunen.

Scalise’s cheque is worth 5,800 euros, and the young Italian is now leading the Order of Merit with 9,295.38 euros and a very small margin over Austrian Lukas Nemecz.

Alps Tour schedule will resume in just three days for the last of the Winter Series tournaments, Katameya Dunes Open (4-6 April), on another great venue in Cairo and for the same prize money, 40,000 euros.

 

 Final round results: click here

Order of Merit: click here

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31st March 2019 | Alps Tour Golf

Italian rookie Scalise leads by one at New Giza

Weather conditions were milder today in Egypt at New Giza Golf for the second round of the New Giza Open, although still not what you would expect in this part of the world, with the wind blowing at peaks of 30 km/h and temperatures fluctuating between 13° and 18°.

Whatever the weather, it was another perfect day for Italian rookie Lorenzo Scalise, who added a 66 (7 birdies and one single bogey) to the 68 he signed yesterday and is now one stroke clear of Dutch Lars Keunen. With eight birdies and one bogey Keunen, 21, at his second year on Alps Tour, climbed five positions on the leaderboard – yesterday he was tied 7th with a 70 (-2) – and is now owner of the new course record, 65 (-7).

Alone in third position at -7, is rookie Frenchman Pierre Pineau (71-66), 19, also successful at the Qualifying School last December as Scalise and Parisian Frederic Lacroix, who sits in fourth position at -6 (72-66) tied with first-round leader Julien Foret. Lacroix, winner of the first tournament of the season at Sokhna, the Ein Bay Open, today climbed 19 steps in the rankings (he was tied 25th yesterday) ; his same second-round score 66 was posted by Argentinian Martin Contini (9th place, at -4) and Spaniard Angel Hidalgo Portillo (15th place, at -3).

« I’ve played even better than yesterday – said Scalise, 23 – the quality of my shots was certainly higher and I hit my drives well, this was one of the goals I had for the day ; I’ve also made some more putts, which always helps. The first holes were the key, I’ve started strong – I was minus 3 after 6 although it was cold and quite windy, and then in the front nine (my back nine actually, since I’ve started from hole 10) from hole 2 to 5 I could save pars and take advantage of two more birdies. Now I’m exactly where I wanted to be, on top, and if I can keep this rythm it will certainly be an interesting and amusing day ».

Fifty players made the cut on level par, among them only the 4 amateurs will not share the 40,000 euros prize money at stake.

 

 

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27th June 2018 | Alps Tour Golf

Keunen and Migliozzi co-leaders

Lars Keunen (NED) and Guido Migliozzi (ITA) are co-leaders of the Open La Pinetina after round 1 with a total score of -8. 

They’re followed by a group of 3 players who are 2 strokes behind: Louis Cohen Boyer (FRA), James Sharp (ENG) and Tom Shadbolt (ENG). 
 
«  My day went pretty good. I was 2 under par through the fifth hole and I birdied 3 in a row to finish the front 9 » Lars Keunen said. «  Then, I gave myself a lot of chances but did not convert too many of them. But I finished pretty well with an eagle on hole 8 » he explained. « It’s a nice start but there are 36 more holes to go » he concluded. 
 
«  Today was really good, my game was really solid, my putt was also very good, I made a few great putts starting from the 1st hole » 21-year-old Guido Migliozzi said. «  To start 8 under is a very good score for the rest of the week. Tomorrow, I’ll tackle the course again and play like today with an attack strategy » he continued. 
 
Both Keunen and Migliozzi made an eagle, 7 birdies and a bogey.
Weather conditions were sunny all day with temperatures in the 30s. 
 
Round 2 will tee off tomorrow at 7h30. 
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