It was a very tough year for the European Tour in 2020, just as it was for sports organisations everywhere. A lot of very hard work went into ensuring that top level professional golf could return in Europe after the enforced shutdown and the resurrection of the Wales Open was one of the real benefits of that work. The tournament at Celtic Manor in 2020 was the first edition of the Wales Open since 2014 and a strong field greeted its return.
The tournament was such a success that the Wales Open was quickly added to the schedule for the 2021 European Tour and hopes are high among Welsh golf fans that Celtic Manor will once again become an annual stop off for some of the leading lights of European and international golf. The Wales Open, after all, is a tournament which has been won by Paul Lawrie, Ian Poulter and Miguel Angel Jiménez, among others, since its foundation in 2000.
|2020||Celtic Manor Resort||Romain Langasque|
2020: Romain Langasque
Of all the questions to be answered by the return of the Wales Open to the European Tour, one which did not have to be asked was whether the Twenty Ten Course at Celtic Manor would be a quality venue. It is a world class golf course and produced an excellent tournament which was won by French golfer Romain Langasque thanks to a fantastic final round of 65.
Langasque played nice, steady golf for the first three days which is just what was required given the difficult scoring conditions. However, he found himself some way down the leaderboard and five shots off the leading pair of Sebastian Soderberg and Connor Syme. The Frenchman set off playing the same sort of steady golf that had served him well over the rest of the tournament but suddenly found his approach play was setting up chances and the putts were dropping.
After making the turn in 33 courtesy of three birdies it became clear that Langasque was a serious contender, especially as some of the players who began the day in contention started to falter. Three more birdies followed on the back nine and, crucially, Langasque kept bogeys off his scorecard where as Soderberg took eight on the last hole and Syme made a double bogey. The win was Langasque’s first on the European Tour and saw him qualify for a place in the 2020 US Open thanks to his position on the UK Swing Order of Merit which was introduced for 2020.