Golf MCB Tour Championship: Frost confident ahead of Mauritius return

South African David Frost is relishing his return to Mauritius on the European Senior Tour for the 2011 season-ending MCB Tour Championship following a dramatic conclusion to his last visit to the sunshine island.

David Frost

David Frost

Frost began his 2011 campaign by defeating Englishman Roger Chapman on the second extra hole to win the Mauritius Commercial Bank Open last December, recovering from losing a four stroke lead to force a play-off with a spectacular eagle on the final hole.

Senior Tour season finale

The 52 year old returns to the magnificent Constance Belle Mare Plage from December 9-11, with the tournament taking on a new title as the Senior Tour season finale following a new four-year agreement with title sponsor Mauritius Commercial Bank.

Frost has an impressive record at Constance Belle Mare Plage, finishing tied fifth on his Senior Tour debut in 2010 before capturing his maiden Senior Tour title last year and he is eager to continue his fine run next month.

‘I feel confident returning to Belle Mare Plage,’ said Frost. ‘I have made quite a few friends amongst the Pro-Am participants over the past two years and I am looking forward to seeing them too.

Highlights of 2011

‘After not winning in Mauritius in 2010 I felt like I needed to win it in 2011, so the pressure was on me. Especially having a four shot lead over Roger entering the last round I should have won easily, but golf is funny game, a couple of shots swing can cause the leading player to go one way and the challenger can get close in a hole or two, and that is what happened . Winning the title in 2011 was sweet revenge for missing out in 2010.’

Legend golf course

Legend golf course

The two-time European Tour winner finished sixth in The Senior Open Championship at Walton Heath in July but his eagle on the 54th hole over Constance Belle Mare Plage’s Legends Course remains the highlight of his season. Having surrendered a four stroke lead to Chapman, Frost found himself two shots behind playing the last and knew he had to produce something special.

He did just that with a brilliant drive followed by a sublime three iron to 15 feet which he rolled in for an eagle three to match Chapman’s 13 under total. Frost then pounced on the second extra hole when Chapman, who had carded a stunning 65 in regulation play, made his only error of the final day, tugging his drive into the deep rough and failing to recover.

‘Starting with a four stroke advantage in the final round was a nice position to be in but Roger played really great and should have won,’ Frost admitted. ‘My aggressive play on the last hole paid off when I tried to eagle the hole to tie him. I think I would have done the same as what Roger did.

‘Had I been leading the event with one hole to play I would have played it as a par five and laid up short on the tee shot. Unfortunately for him I made the eagle to send us both into a play-off.

Legends golf course at Belle Mare Plage

‘The Legends course has some great, challenging tee shots and under the pressure you need to hit the fairways. From there it is target golf to the pins as well. The greens are a little tricky with the Bermuda grass, so you need to read the grain well.

‘I’m really looking forward to returning to Belle Mare Plage and I have decided to stay on another 4 days after the tournament to relax and enjoy some days without waking up and worrying what time I am on the tee.’

Competition for the title

One of Frost’s rivals for the MCB Tour Championship title is expected to be American Tom Lehman, who defeated him in a play-off to win the 2010 US Senior PGA Championship. Former Open Champion and Ryder Cup Captain Lehman won the Money List on the US Champions Tour this year and will be looking to round off a fine 2011 season in style in Mauritius.

In addition to the battle for the title itself, the focus will also be on the contest between the leading two players on the Senior Tour Order of Merit, Peter Fowler and Barry Lane, who are bidding to win the John Jacobs Trophy.

Fowler will take a €25,569 advantage into the final event of the season but with a prize fund of €400,000 and winner’s cheque of €60,000 on offer, Lane has every chance of overturning that lead and succeeding Boonchu Ruangkit as Senior Tour Number One.

Golf MCB Tour Championship: John Jacobs Trophy contenders in complimentary mood

Opening press conference for MCB Tour Championship

Opening press conference for MCB Tour Championship

The compliments came thick and fast at Monday’s press conference on the Constance Belle Mare Plage Legend course to launch the inaugural MCB Tour Championship.

Among those in attendance were Australian Peter Fowler, who leads the Senior Tour order-of-merit, and Englishman Barry Lane, his only rival for the John Jacobs Trophy that is awarded to the season’s top money-winner.

Just over €25,500 separates the two men in the contest for Senior Tour supremacy and with €61,000 on offer to the winner, the contest could well go all the way to the final round.

Read more on the MCB Tour Championship website.

Special offer: Green fees free of charge at Mauritius Links and Legend golf courses in 2012

Links golf course

Links golf course

Experienced and novice golfers can enjoy this fabulous offer during 2012.

Green fees at both the Links and Legend golf courses are free of charge to all guests of Constance Belle Mare Plage and Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius from 1 January – 31 December 2012.

Club cars at the Links golf course are also free of charge to residents of both resorts throughout 2012.

Constance championship golf courses

Constance Hotels Experience has 3 championship golf courses in the Indian Ocean – 2 in Mauritius and 1 in the Seychelles.

Each 18-hole golf course is a real challenge for professional and amateur golfers alike, recognised by the PGA and various other federations.

The 2 courses in Mauritius were conceived to host international golf tournaments. Since December 2009, the Legend and the Links golf courses have hosted one of the tournaments on the European Senior Tour calendar – the MCB Tour Championship.

Golf pro tip 3: Putting shot

Watch this instructional video for how to perfect your putting shot, with golf pro Vishnoo Seeneevassen, from the Marc Farry Golf Academy at the Legend Golf Course, Constance Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius.

Golf: John Jacobs' Trophy battle going to the wire

18th hole at Legend golf course

18th at the Legend golf course

Following Chien Soon Lu’s victory in the Fubon Senior Open, the stage is set for another thrilling climax to the European Senior Tour season at the MCB Tour Championship in Mauritius from 9-11 December at the Legend golf course, Constance Belle Mare Plage.

Peter Fowler and Barry Lane battle for trophy

All eyes will be on the battle for the John Jacobs’ Trophy between Peter Fowler and Barry Lane.
 
Australian Fowler captured the ISPS Handa Senior Masters presented by The Stapleford Forum in June and the following month’s Bad Ragaz PGA Seniors Open in Switzerland.

Lane successfully defended his Cleveland Golf/Srixon Scottish Senior Open title in August, then finished second at the Travis Perkins plc Senior Masters at the start of September, and won again the next week in the Czech Republic at the Casa Serena Open.

After a campaign lasting 13 months and 21 tournaments, the season will reach a dramatic finale in Mauritius in December.

History of the John Jacobs’ Trophy

John Jacobs and Sam Torrance in 2009
John Jacobs and Sam Torrance in 2009

As the Senior Tour celebrates its 20th anniversary season, the contest between the 2 former European Tour champions is a fitting tribute to the growth in stature and popularity that the Tour has seen since its inception in 1992, as both men vie to hoist their first John Jacobs’ Trophy.

First awarded in 1993, the Senior Tour Order of Merit trophy became the John Jacobs’ Trophy – a name synonymous with European golf, the founding father of The European Tour, Ryder Cup legend and world-renowned teacher.

Jacobs was the Tour’s trail-blazing first Tournament Director-General and his name commands the respect and gratitude of anyone involved in the game.

Daily news from MCB Tour Championship

Don’t miss the MCB Tour Championship, 9-11 December website where we’ll be posting daily articles during the event.

And catch up on the latest news on the players entering this year’s event:

Golf pro tip 2: Bunker shot

Watch this instructional video for how to perfect your bunker shot, with golf pro Vishnoo Seeneevassen, from the Marc Farry Golf Academy at the Legend Golf Course, Constance Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius.