European Tour

Poulter hoping to rekindle Italian memories

Ian Poulter (Getty Images)
Ian Poulter (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Ian Poulter returns to the venue where he claimed his second Italian Open title 17 years ago hoping that another victory can spark a late push in the Race to Dubai.

The Ryder Cup legend won his maiden European Tour title in the Italian Open when it was played in Sardinia in 2000.

He triumphed again two years later at Olgiata Golf Club and went on to finish two shots clear of Scotland's Paul Lawrie.

"It was a long time ago - 17 years but it is always great to come back to a venue you've won at. It was the last time it was here too so hopefully it will be another great week to enjoy the Italian Open. I have two so it would be lovely to make it three," said Poulter.

Poulter, who goes into the week in 15th position on the Race to Dubai, is now targeting a third Italian Open victory as he seeks a strong end to a 2019 season.

He has already yielded five Top 10 finishes on the European Tour alongside a share of 12th at the Masters tournament.

"It's been a good year. It's definitely been one to sit back, reflect and enjoy. I've only missed three cuts so far this year. All three in Majors. The other one I had chance to win. Consistency has been key," said the Englishman.

"I've played pretty well in a lot of tournaments. I've not finished many off, which I would like to have done. If I can have a nice run now - I'm playing six out of seven weeks in a row. So I'm going to play lot of golf coming up and seeing if I can get on a bit of a run and see if I can have a go at the Race to Dubai and then enjoy Christmas with the kids."

The Englishman joins Ryder Cup team-mates Justin Rose, Paul Casey and Tyrrell Hatton, Sweden's Alex Noren and home favourite Francesco Molinari, along with winning captain Thomas Bjorn and 2020 captain Padraig Harrington.

Compiled by Lynn Butler

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