English teams set for GolfSixes clash in St Albans
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The draw for the European Tour’s GolfSixes tournament has pitted the two English teams together.
The innovative six-hole team competition will return to Centurion Club, to the west of St Albans, from Saturday, May 5 to Sunday, May 6.
And the two English teams in the 16-strong international field were grouped together in today’s draw at host venue Centurion Club.
England, represented by Eddie Pepperell and Matt Wallace, and the England Women’s Team of Georgia Hall and Charley Hull will go head-to-head in the group stage of this year’s European Tour GolfSixes competition.
Georgia Hall said: “It should be a great match. I’ve never played with Matt or Eddie before, so we’ll see how it goes, but I just can’t wait for the week to get started.
“We play against the same players every week so for us to play against the men is a big change but I think it will be awesome.
“I’m ready to give it my best against them. I can’t wait. It’s in England, which is quite rare for females who play in the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) to play at home.”
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Georgia, who celebrated her 22nd birthday today, is looking forward to next month’s competition.
She said: “I think the big thing is that this is something different, it’s only six holes so you get a result quite quickly and then the next team comes along. I think it’s great for fans.
“Me and Charlie have known each other since we were 10 and played throughout England together and Solheim Cup in a match together.
“We have similar games, we’re quite aggressive, so I think it will be a good week.”
Charley Hull has played alongside Eddie Pepperell before.
She said: “He’s a really nice guy and he’s playing some good golf so it will be fun to play with him.
“I’m really looking forward to it, it’s going to be good fun to try something different. I haven’t really played in an event like this before.
“It’s a good thing for golf and I think the fans will enjoy it, too.
“It will be good fun, the home fans will get to see two sides with the women and the men playing. I think it will get all different people into the event.”
Hall and Hull made the draw for the group stage of the second edition of GolfSixes this lunchtime alongside Lucas Bjerregaard, who won the inaugural event for Team Denmark with Thorbjørn Olesen.
The two England teams will also face Sweden and South Africa in Group D.
The Captains Team of 2018 Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjørn and 2019 Solheim Cup captain Catriona Matthew were drawn alongside 2016 runners-up Australia, Spain and South Korea in Group B.
Defending champions Team Denmark will take on Thailand, the United States and the European Women’s Team of Suzann Pettersen and Mel Reid.
The final wildcard team, Ireland, represented by Paul Dunne and Gavin Moynihan, were drawn against France, Italy and Scotland in Group C.
The 16 teams will compete over six holes in a group stage, with teams split into four groups of four, before the top two teams from each pool progress to the knockout stages – the quarter-finals, the semi-finals, a third/fourth place play-off match and the final.
In the group stages, three points will be given for victory, with one point awarded for a draw, and the matches will be played in a greensomes match play format.
Once again the six holes will be themed, with the popular shot clock hole returning – with a penalty imposed if players take longer than 30 seconds per shot – alongside the long drive and closest to the pin holes.
The innovative six-hole competition will have a festival feel with a centrally-located Fan Zone full of entertainment for all the family.
Speaking at today’s draw, title holder Lucas Bjerregaard said: “It was a lot of fun last year and just a great event, we’re looking forward to defending.
“It was great to see all the kids last year just having a blast. Everyone in the fanzone and out on the course, people just seemed to think it was a lot of fun.
“I think the fact that it’s only six holes makes it so much easier for kids to enjoy.
“It’s not a whole day, and there’s lots of other stuff they can do. It was just an amazing couple of days and I’m really looking forward to it again.”
Lucas added: “GolfSixes started a whole bunch of things last year, like the shot clock, and now we have the Shot Clock Masters event.
“They are trying new things and are not afraid of it. I can’t remember ladies and men playing against each other in matches like these before so it’s going to be very interesting and I think we’re going to have a tough time beating them.
“We don’t interact that much between the two tours and it’s a great way to start that up a bit more.”
GolfSixes full group stage draw:
• Group A
Denmark – Lucas Bjerregaard and Thorbjørn Olesen
Thailand – Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Thongchai Jaidee
USA – Daniel Im and David Lipsky
European Women – Suzann Pettersen and Mel Reid
• Group B
Australia – Sam Brazel and Wade Ormsby
South Korea – Jeunghun Wang and Soomin Lee
Spain – Pablo Larrazábal and Adrian Otaegui
European Captains – Thomas Bjørn and Catriona Matthew
• Group C
France – Alexander Levy and Romain Wattel
Italy – Matteo Manassero and Renato Paratore
Scotland – Scott Jamieson and Richie Ramsay
Ireland – Paul Dunne and Gavin Moynihan
• Group D
England – Eddie Pepperell and Matt Wallace
South Africa – George Coetzee and Haydn Porteous
Sweden – Alexander Björk and Joakim Lagergren
England Women – Georgia Hall and Charley Hull