The Open may be preparing itself to head to Northern Ireland for the first time since 1951 next summer but 12 months later, a familiar host will return to the rota for one of the world’s great sporting events.
Royal St George’s in Kent will host The 149th Open from 12-19 July 2020 and you can stay ahead of the curve by registering your interest in tickets.
Following unprecedented demand to watch The Open at Royal Portrush in 2019 – with all four Championship days already selling out – those registering will be informed of all the latest ticket information, including how to ensure priority access to tickets.
Darren’s greatest moment
Royal St George’s became the first course outside Scotland to host golf’s oldest Championship in 1894 and 2020 will be the 15th time The Open has been contested on the historic Kent links.
It was last played at Royal St George’s in 2011 when Darren Clarke showed his mastery of links golf in challenging weather conditions to hold off Americans Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson to become Champion Golfer of the Year.
And the Northern Irishman admits victory was the realisation of a childhood dream.
“It was an unbelievable feeling to lift the Claret Jug and know that my name was displayed on the trophy alongside so many of the greatest players ever to play the game,” said Clarke.
“The Open is what it is all about for me as a golfer and it is the championship I always dreamt of winning from when I first took up the game as a kid.
“I have so many wonderful memories from that week at Sandwich and I will be thrilled to go back there for The Open in 2020.”
Return to Royal St George’s
Not only was 1894 the first time The Open had been played outside of Scotland but The 35th Open was won by JH Taylor, who became the first English professional to win the Championship.
Over the years, the historic links at Sandwich has seen some of golf’s greatest players lift the Claret Jug including Harry Vardon, Walter Hagen, Henry Cotton, Bobby Locke, Sandy Lyle and Greg Norman, who secured a two-shot victory over Sir Nick Faldo in 1993.
Clarke is far from the only man excited about the return to Kent, with Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, saying:
“We are very much looking forward to the return of The Open to Royal St George’s in 2020.
“The Open is a true celebration of sport and the global spotlight will fall once again on Sandwich.
“Royal St George’s has produced a series of outstanding Champion Golfers over the last 120 years and it is a thrilling prospect for golf fans to see the greatest players competing on one of the world’s finest links courses.”
Kent welcomes The Open
Hosting The Open always provides a huge boost to the local community and plenty of Kent dignitaries are ecstatic to welcome the event back to Kent.
Paul Carter CBE, Leader of Kent County Council, said: “We are absolutely delighted that we have secured The Open in 2020 at Royal St George’s.
“In 2011 there were over 180,000 visitors to The Open, and an extra 37,000 passengers travelled on the special High Speed train service from London St Pancras.
“The benefits to the tourist economy was massive, amounting to over £64 million. Significant transport improvements were needed to improve spectator flows in and out of Royal St George’s and KCC has played a leading role in facilitating partnership funding with the Local Enterprise Partnership and District Councils Dover and Thanet.”
Christian Brodie, Chairman of the South East Local Enterprise Partnership, added: “The Open is one of the country’s iconic sporting events and it’s fantastic news that Royal St George’s will host it again.
“The Open in 2016 was worth an estimated £110 million to Troon and Scotland and in 2020 it will present us with an opportunity to highlight the economic opportunities for business to invest in East Kent to a global audience.”