Richard Bland like Lee Westwood: "Yes, I did it"

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Richard Bland like Lee Westwood: "Yes, I did it"

A few hours after Lee Westwood who confirmed that he had indeed requested an "exit voucher" to play the LIV Golf Invitational, Richard Bland did the same from the Belfry where the British Masters begins this Thursday.

"I did it ! This is the answer given by the Englishman when a journalist asked him if he had registered for the event scheduled for June 9-11 at the Centurion Club, near London, and which will offer a dizzying prize pool of $25 million for just 48 players signed up.

Richard Bland, who will defend his only career title this week after 478 tournaments played on the European circuit, did not want to say more about his motivations. “For now I want to focus on this tournament and I want to respect the British Masters.

So yes (I signed up), but right now the DP World Tour is my 100% goal this week. This tournament will also be his 500th on the European circuit in 24 years of presence. The 49-year-old becomes the third world-class player to have publicly announced his intention to play in the controversial Greg Norman and Saudi-backed event after Phil Mickelson and Lee Westwood.

If the consequences are still uncertain for the participants, according to the various information, 15 of the 100 best players in the world could do the same, including the Spaniard Sergio Garcia and the South African Louis Oosthuizen.

Bland was born in Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire. He turned professional in 1996 and reached the final stage of the European Tour's qualifying school in 1997 to gain his card on Europe's second tier Challenge Tour for 1998.

In 2001 he won for the first time, at the season ending Challenge Tour Grand Final. The win elevated him in the rankings sufficiently to gain a place on the European Tour for 2002. In January 2022, Bland finished as runner-up at the Dubai Desert Classic, losing to Viktor Hovland in a playoff.