Cape Town – Haydn Porteous may be South African but he feels he will have some home advantage when he defends the title at this week’s Czech Masters.
Porteous claimed his second European Tour in Prague, when he defeated England’s Lee Slattery by two shots.
He set a new record when he became the youngster winner of the tournament at 23 years 57 days beating Thomas Pieters’ previous record by 218 days.
Porteous stated that he feels at home in Prague thanks to some close ties – which include his win last year.
“I feel like I have really close ties here in Prague, to obviously win the Czech Masters last year and have a girlfriend from here, it’s always nice to come back and it’s starting to feel more and more like home,” said the 24-year-old.
“It was a good fight to the end last year and I’m sure it quite entertaining for everyone. I really needed a strong finish towards the end of last season, I had just put together a top ten finish in Denmark the week before Czech Masters.
“So that gave me a little bit of confidence leading into the week and then things seemed to go my way, I got the bounced that I needed when I needed them and at the end of the week it was a dream to be lifting the trophy,” said the South African.
“I could keep my card and get myself into the final event at the DP World Tour Championship, which was awesome.”
The Czech Masters will be making its fifth appearance on the European Tour’s International Schedule.
Porteous is hoping to become the first back-to-back winner of the tournament this week at the Albatross Golf Resort.
“The golf course really suits me, it’s quite long and some of the par fives are touch and go when it comes to going for them in two, so I feel like I have the length advantage to get to those par fives in two. I think that’s quite a big advantage on this course,” he said.
“The par fours are quite tough too, so to have a decent chance at making birdies on the par fives is exactly what you need to feel comfortable. Prague feels like home and it just feels like a very comfortable week.
“It was a bit of a déjà vu from last year, when I finished sixth in Denmark the week before this, and last week I finished sixth too so hopefully I can put a solid performance together this week and hopefully I can lift the trophy again,” said Porteous.
Porteous will tee off his opening round alongside Englishmen Matt Wallace and Eddie Peppered (08:05 SA time).