The British Masters is saved by Britain’s Favourite Golfer

by Maura Hutchinson

On Monday the European Tour unveiled its 2019 schedule and one big surprise awaited us all. After alluding that this year’s British Masters might be the last because of sponsorship issues, it was revealed that The British Masters is definitely happening next year and will be back with an extremely popular host.

English golfer, Tommy Fleetwood took to Twitter shortly after the schedule was released to confirm he will indeed be the 2019 host of The British Masters in his home town of Southport. Since its introduction back into the European Tour lineup in 2015, the event has been hosted each year by an English golfer. In 2015 it was Ian Poulter, 2016 was Luke Donald, 2017 was Lee Westwood and earlier this month Justin Rose hosted the tournament at Walton Heath when fellow Englishman Eddie Pepperell won.

“I can’t wait to host the British Masters in my home town,” said Fleetwood on Monday. “It will be such an honour and I’m so grateful to have been asked. I’m extremely proud to follow the great ambassadors of our game who have hosted this tournament. I am very confident that Southport will make everyone welcome and the north west of England, and its love of golf, will embrace this opportunity and show support to us all.”

Next year’s event will move to the second week in May and will be played at the Hillside Golf Club. Hillside hasn’t hosted a regular Tour event since the 1982 PGA Championship. After the announcement on Monday, golf fans and players alike took to social media to express their delight at not having lost a tournament steeped in history and one truly loved by golfers throughout the country.

At the end of this year’s British Masters, host Rose let his thoughts be known about the state of the tournament going further and how he felt about it possibly not being picked up for next year.

Talking to a reporter from the Mail on Sunday, Rose said, “Dare I say it, there are so many events on the European Tour that shouldn’t be there, and these events with history are the ones that should be there.”

Adding, “I wonder if we should be focusing on condensing things slightly, and stressing quality over quantity. It’s such a shame when we lose events like this one, and we’ve seen it far too often with the loss of other traditional events like the European Open. These are the ones where the fans really come out in force in the UK and support them and they create the type of atmosphere which makes it such a pleasure for the players to compete.”

Looks like Rose’s message got through to the powers that be. While the new date of the tournament (a week before the PGA Championship at Bethpage Black) might stop some the big names from playing, Britain’s new golden boy of golf, Fleetwood will definitely by there. And that’s good enough for us.