Michael Hoey set to head local challenge at NI Open
Now that the dust has settled on an exhilarating Irish Open at Royal County Down, attentions will turn to another international golf tournament when the Northern Ireland Open, in association with SPHERE Global and Ulster Bank, takes place at Galgorm Castle Golf Club from August 6-9.
Many of the leading players who teed it up at Royal County Down will return to compete at the Ballymena venue.
"This is our third year of staging the NI Open and every year we have grown and developed the event to become one of the great sporting occasions of the year," explained Gary Henry, NI Open Tournament Director and Director Galgorm Castle.
Former European Tour winners Simon Thornton and Damien McGrane are just two of the many homegrown players who will compete at Galgorm.
Five-time European Tour winner Michael Hoey will also play in his role as Tournament Ambassador. "Without question this is one of the best tournaments on the European Challenge Tour," said the 36-year-old.
Leading players from the Challenge Tour will be on show such as Spain's Nacho Elvira, who tops the standings with two wins and a third will automatically secure his card for the European Tour.
Players like England's Max Orrin, Rhys Davies from Wales and Ireland's high-flying Ruaidhri McGee will all be chasing the €27,200 top prize won by Sweden's Joakim Lagergren in 2014.
Last year record crowds of over 34,000 came through the gates and similar numbers are anticipated again.