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.

 

Golf: MCB Tour Championship – Mark Mouland

Welshman Mark Mouland has some unfinished business to attend to in December when he makes a nostalgic return visit to Mauritius for the MCB Tour Championship from 9-11 December.

Mark Mouland

Mark Mouland

Mouland’s success so far

In this, his first season on the European Senior Tour, Mouland has made quite an impression, registering a maiden victory in Portugal and securing a top 20 order-of-merit ranking with winnings of over €100,000.

Mouland’s appearances in Europe were restricted by his visits to the US Champions Tour, where he gained a limited number of entries through the 2010 Qualifying School.

When he revisited the US Tour School earlier in November, Mouland claimed 9th place, after a play-off, to secure a conditional exemption in 2012.

Now his attention is focused on Mauritius, where he will be a man on a mission. His intention is to become the first man to win 3 professional tournaments on the island.

Earlier wins in the Mauritius Open

It was in 2003 that the Welshman became the first pro to register back-to-back triumphs in the Mauritius Open, the forerunner of the MCB Open. The following year he finished 5th behind Englishman Miles Tunnicliff, after which he was unable to return – until now.

Mouland rates his chances this year

Legend golf course

18th at the Legend

‘I’m really looking forward to going back to Mauritius,’ he said. ‘I love the place, the ambience, the atmosphere, the golf course and the whole set-up.’

Mouland added: ‘It has been great to be back on tour. I was so looking forward to joining the Senior Tour that I couldn’t wait to turn 50. It’s been an absolute ball. It is far more relaxed than the main Tour, with an easygoing atmosphere and a lot of camaraderie.’

Mouland’s experience and success over the Constance Belle Mare Plage Legend layout is certain to stand him in good stead for the tournament. He knows what it takes to be successful over the tricky Hugh Baiocchi-designed layout.

‘It would be wonderful if I managed to win the MCB Tour Championship, not only for the title but to complete a three-timer on Mauritius, something no-one else has done.

‘That would please me immensely. But there are some exceptional players in the field so we will just have to see what happens.’

Catch up on earlier articles about the MCB Tour Championship

And don’t miss the official MCB Tour Championship website where we’ll be posting daily articles during the event.

Article written by Neil Webber, golf journalist.

Major winner Tom Lehman to join MCB Tour title contest

Former Major Champion and Ryder Cup Captain Tom Lehman will join a star-studded cast in Mauritius when he makes a welcome appearance on the European Senior Tour for the 2011 season-ending event, the MCB Tour Championship from 9-11 December.

Tom Lehman

Tom Lehman

American Tom Lehman is the highest profile entry for this year’s MCB Senior Tour Championship at Constance Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius.

Lehman said, ‘I have always wanted to go to Mauritius and getting this opportunity is something that I am looking forward to with much excitement and anticipation.

I can’t think of a better way to finish the 2011 season than by competing in the MCB Tour Championship in Mauritius.’

The 52-year-old from Scottsdale, Arizona, will be the first winner of the British Open Championship to appear in what has been the most prestigious professional tournament on Mauritius for the last 18 years.

Constance Belle Mare Plage attracts top players

Over the years, Belle Mare Plage has played host to a number of promising young golfers who have gone on to make their mark at the highest level.

Legend golf course, Constance Belle Mare Plage

Legend golf course, Constance Belle Mare Plage

Players such as Ian Poulter, Graeme McDowell, Gregory Havret and Jamie Donaldson – the last winner of the original Mauritius Open – have all experienced the delights and the frustrations that the unique Legend course can deliver.

In 2009, when the European Senior Tour arrived on the island, it was the turn of more established names in the world of golf – the likes of Sam Torrance, David Frost, Costantino Rocca, Jose Rivero and Manuel Pinero – to take centre stage.

But Tom Lehman will be the biggest winner to have visited Mauritius in the tournament’s history.

Lehman will undoubtedly start as favourite for the MCB Tour Championship, but with most of the top 60 Seniors Tour order-of-merit competing, plus defending Tour champion Mike Cunning, Lehman is certain to find the rivalry intense.

Find out more about the MCB Tour Championship

  • Watch this space for more information about the tournament, and don’t miss our daily blog posts during the championship – keeping you up-to-date with all the latest action.
  • If you missed our previous article, find out who else is playing this year at the 2011 MCB Tour Championship
  • Visit the official MCB Tour Championship website.

Article written by Neil Webber, golf journalist.

Golf: MCB Senior Tour Championship 2011

The countdown to this year’s season-ending European Senior Tour Championship in Mauritius is well under way. Constance Belle Mare Plage is preparing to add another chapter to its distinguished history.

Legend at Belle Mare Plage

Legend at Belle Mare Plage

The 54-hole MCB Senior Tour Championship takes place from 9-11 December 2011. It provides the climax to a week-long programme of golf competition that includes a pro-am and a number of amateur tournaments.

Who’ll be playing this year?

The closing date for entry to the tournament is late November. Among those who have already confirmed their attendance are:

  • David Frost – last year’s MCB Open champion
  • Roger Chapman – runner-up
  • Peter Fowler – current European Senior Tour order-of-merit leader
  • Mike Cunning – the winner of the 2010 Tour Championship
  • Sam Torrance – successful Ryder Cup player and captain
  • Carl Mason – the Senior Tour’s leading career earner
  • Boonchu Ruangkit – last season’s order-of-merit winner
  • Kevin Sturgeon – 2009 MCB Open champion.

In addition, Welshman Mark Mouland, a recent winner in Portugal in his first year on the Senior Tour, will be relishing a return to the Legend course where, in 2002 and 2003, he won the Mauritius Open in its original format as an end-of-year invitation event.

History of the event

Legend golf course

Legend golf course

It’s just 2 years since Constance Hotels Experience and the Mauritius Commercial Bank joined forces to stage the first of 2 hugely successful Senior Tour events on the Belle Mare Plage Legend golf course.

This year, the partnership is hosting the lucrative MCB Senior Tour Championship - the season’s finale. Entry is restricted to the leading earners on this year’s European Senior Tour and past winners of a major or seniors’ major.

Adding extra interest this year will be the presentation of the prestigious John Jacobs Trophy to the player who finishes top of the Senior Tour order-of-merit.

Twelve months ago that honour went to Boonchu Ruangkit from Thailand, but this year’s recipient may not be decided until the final putt has been sunk in the Tour Championship.

The Legend

The Legend

Not that the Legend course is any stranger to final round drama. It has a long history of producing the unexpected, as Roger Chapman, Welshman Phillip Price and a number of other players will testify.

Results and news from the tournament

During the event, we’ll be posting up-to-the-minute news on this blog and the Constance Facebook page.

Results, reports and features will also appear each day on the official MCB Tour Championship website.

Article written by Neil Webber, golf journalist.

Constance Junior Open Golf Tournament 2011

Constance Junior Open golf tournament winners

Winners of Constance Junior Open

The Constance Junior Open golf tournament took place on Saturday 27 August at the Legend golf course, Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius.

Twenty-two juniors, aged 6-19 years, took part in the annual competition.

The best gross winner, Ludovic Bax, has been qualified to play in the Pro-Am of the MCB Tour Championship from 5-11 December 2011.

Since the event started 5 years ago, the Constance Junior Open has been empowering young Mauritians to take part in the sport. Our golf pros are at hand to help them improve their technique so they reach a good level of play.

Winners of each category

Congratulations to the winners for their great performance in each category.

Ludovic Bax, winner of Constance Junior Open 2011

Ludovic Bax, winner of Constance Junior Open 2011

Ludovic Bax (Winner Best Gross)

Cat 6–9 year old (Girls) – play 6 holes

  • 1st prize – Eva Le Gac (11 points)

Cat 6–9 year old (Boys) – play 6 holes

  • 1st prize – Sebastien Liu Chung Ming (12 points)
  • 2nd prize – Damien Espitalier-Noël (6 points)

Cat 10–12 year old – play 9 holes

  • 1st prize – Romain Bechard (5 points)
  • 2nd prize – Johan Blackburn (4 points)
  • 3rd prize – Valentin Grel (3 points)

Cat 13–15 year old – play 18 holes

  • 1st prize – Yannick Bax (24 points)
  • 2nd prize – Oliver Wong Teng Yuen (15 points)
  • 3rd prize – Dean Thomas (14 points)

Cat 16–19 year old – play 18 holes

  • 1st prize – Ludovic Bax (31 points)
  • 2nd prize – Loic Csizmadia (31 points)
  • 3rd prize – Miguel Sheik-Amoomady (19 points)