Defending champion Pablo Larrazabal is elated to be back at Leopard Creek for the 2020 Alfred Dunhill Championship, which tees off on Thursday.
The Spaniard battled through extreme heat and sore blisters on his way to a famous victory at last year’s edition and has since formed an unbreakable bond with the magnificent course, which overlooks the banks of the Crocodile River and the Kruger National Park.
After Larrazabal’s fifth European Tour victory, the 37-year-old is absolutely thrilled to have the opportunity to once again compete at Leopard Creek.
‘Everything that I love in life is here,’ Larrazabal said ahead of Thursday’s start.
‘The best nature and the best golf courses combined make this place a dream place.
‘We are fortunate people. As bad as this year has been for all the world, to be able to come to places like this – especially this place – we are so lucky.
‘It doesn’t matter how good we play this week, it’s just the best week of the year. It’s a dream come true just to come here and play the game of golf,’ he said.
Larrazabal has been paired alongside Sunshine Tour competitor Daniel van Tonder and Matthias Schwab for the opening two rounds of the event, with the Austrian making his debut appearance in the Lowveld.
The 25-year-old Schwab will make his first appearance since the Cyprus Classic earlier this month and is looking forward to the experience that awaits at the Dunhill Championship.
‘It’s very nice to be here, it’s my first time,’ he said.
‘I’ve heard a lot of good things from some of the other guys and it’s amazing. I love nature. I live in the mountains in Austria, so I’m in nature a lot there, too, but it’s completely different here … it’s awesome.’