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New and existing golf fans will once again be able to watch some of the world’s leading golfers for free in the opening round of the British Masters supported by Sky Sports thanks to the return of ‘Sky Sports Thursday’.

Tournament host Lee Westwood, the former world No.1, has announced that 10,000 free tickets will be available here, on a first come, first served basis from 9am on Friday March 3 for the first round of the British Masters, which takes place at Close House, in Newcastle upon Tyne, on Thursday September 28.

Tickets for the final three rounds of the British Masters, from Friday September 29-Sunday October 1, along with a further allocation of tickets for Thursday’s opening round, will then be available to buy on general release from 9am on Monday March 6. Prices for tournament days start from just £15 with the early-bird discount offers running until April 28 offering significant savings on gate admission.

Sky Sports Thursday was a hugely popular part of the British Masters at Woburn in 2015 and at The Grove in 2016, and Westwood, who succeeds Ian Poulter and Luke Donald in the host role, encouraged people of all golfing backgrounds to take advantage of the initiative when the tournament heads to the north east of England for the first time.

He said: “I am delighted that with the help of Sky Sports and the European Tour we are able to make 10,000 free tickets available for the opening round at Close House as part of Sky Sports Thursday.

Lee Westwood

“The British Masters really has become the ‘people’s tournament’ over the last couple of years and with the tickets being available this year on a first come, first served basis it means everyone has the opportunity to come along, particularly if they haven’t been to a golf tournament before.

“The people in the north east love their sport, and we’ve already had a lot of interest in the tournament, so I’m sure we will get some great support at Close House in September.”

Westwood, who has been Close House’s Touring Professional since 2011, won the British Masters in the tournament’s first spell on the European Tour, claiming the title at The Belfry in 2007 and then narrowly missing out on successfully defending the title 12 months later when he lost in a play-off to Spain’s Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño at the same venue. He finished third at The Grove last year when Alex Noren claimed the trophy, the Swede succeeding Englishman Matthew Fitzpatrick who won at Woburn Golf Club in 2015. 

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