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Dunhill Links Championship: Wladimir Klitschko to tee off in Tayside and Fife

Wladimir Klitschko poses during the weigh-in prior to the Heavyweight Championship contest against Anthony Joshua at Wembley Arena.
Wladimir Klitschko poses during the weigh-in prior to the Heavyweight Championship contest against Anthony Joshua at Wembley Arena.

The gloves will be off when former world boxing champion Wladimir Klitschko arrives in Courier Country next month to take part in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

Klitschko, 41, recently announced his shock retirement from boxing after a 21-year career in the ring during which he won 64 of his 69 fights.

He will join an impressive line-up of celebrities from the world of sport, music and entertainment who will play golf over the Old Course St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns from October 5 to 8.

With a prize fund of $5 million, it incorporates two separate competitions – an individual tournament for the leading professionals and a team championship in which the professionals are paired with amateur golfers.

Three sporting knights Sir Ian Botham, Sir AP McCoy and Sir Steve Redgrave head up the sports stars, including rugby’s Fourie du Preez, Rob Louw, Paul O’Connell and  Brian O’Driscoll, footballers Luis Figo and Jamie Redknapp, and cricketers Shane Warne, Kevin Pietersen, Mark Boucher, Jacques Kallis and Mark Nicholas.

From the world of music, Mike Rutherford from Genesis, Dave Farrell of Linkin Park, Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres and rocker Huey Lewis will be joining Boyzone singer Ronan Keating, Brian McFadden, former lead singer of Westlife, and Tom Chaplin from Keane, who have already confirmed they will be playing.

Dave Farrell, who is playing for the second time, said: “Playing golf with spectators was a new experience, and the energy that comes from it is something I’m looking forward to this year.

Actor Jamie Dornan has played in the tournament over the past two years.

“I’m a golf fan, so I enjoy any chance I get to see those guys Rory, Kaymer, Willett and McDowell hit shots.”

Other amateurs taking part include film actors Jamie Dornan, Matthew Goode, Greg Kinnear and Kelly Rohrbach plus Peter Jones from Dragon’s Den.

This year the professional field has a classic line-up of Major Championship winners: Darren Clarke, Ernie Els, Martin Kaymer, Paul Lawrie, Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy and Danny Willett.

Also playing are Luke Donald, Ross Fisher, Matthew Fitzpatrick, Tommy Fleetwood, Branden Grace, Chris Wood and Lee Westwood.

Defending champion Tyrrell Hatton returns to St Andrews attempting to become the first to win back-to-back Alfred Dunhill Links titles.

Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn and vice-captain Robert Karlsson, who won the tournament in 2008, are also playing.

In June 2011 the Alfred Dunhill Links Foundation was established as the official Foundation of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

The Foundation is committed to developing young amateur golfers in Scotland and South Africa and also supports the University of St Andrews and the St Andrews Pilgrim Foundation, which refurbishes and preserves historical monuments in the town.

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