With Francesco Molinari's highly deserving Race to Dubai success, and Danny Willett's first tournament win in 18 months now firmly in the books, we've started thinking about the golfers to watch in 2018/19 on the European Tour.
To help build up to the next 12 months on Tour, here's six golfers we'll be keeping an eye on...
With a highly consistent finish to the 2017/18, we expect China's highest ranked golfer to pick up where he left off when he tees it up again on the European Tour next season.
The likeable Chinese superstar won the Dubai Desert Classic at the beginning of the year and finished like a train during the final five tournaments of the season. He was very unfortunate not to grab a second win at the Turkish Airlines Open, but we expect plenty of highs in 2019 for a golfer who is certainly trending in the right direction.
Shots like this fairway hole-out will go a long way to helping secure more European Tour titles...
Another consistent 2017/18 performer, Matt Wallace started the year ranked at 138th in the world; he now sits firmly within the top-50. A hat-trick of wins was completed back in September at the Made in Denmark, while a strong finish to the Race to Dubai points race came at both the Nedbank Golf Challenge and the DP World Tour Championship finale.
He looks the real deal and is most definitely one of our players to watch in 2018/19. Check out the highlights of Matt's win at the BMW International Open in Germany below...
After threatening the upper reaches of a few leaderboards without ever truly lasting the distance, it looked to many that Danny Willett would finish the 2017/18 European Tour season empty-handed.
Ranked as low as 462nd in the world after May's BMW PGA Championship, there seemed no obvious way back for a golfer who looked devoid of confidence and seemingly unable to come to terms with his position in the game as a Masters champion.
Then last week happened. A stunning win at the DP World Tour Championship has Willett believing in himself once again. While it will take a fair amount of time to get back to his pre-Augusta 2016 form, we believe that if he can stay injury free 2019 could see marked improvement for the Englishman.
Catch the highlights of the DP World Tour Championship win below...
Brandon Stone seems primed to win a few more golf tournaments on the European Tour, and could even put himself in contention for major glory in the next few years. The Scottish Open champion just missed out on becoming the first golfer on the Tour to shoot a 59 - with that accolade finally going to Oliver Fisher at the British Masters.
If Stone is to become the first South African since Ernie Els in 2012 to win one of the big ones, it will likely come after having cemented himself within the European Tour's elite. We're hopeful!
The 25-year-old Spaniard is currently ranked at a career-high mark of 74th in the Official Golf Rankings and has an impressive third place at the Turkish Airlines Open to sit alongside his Belgian knockout win back in May.
An impressive 2018 was underlined by the first appearance at a major championship. Teeing it up at Bellerive Country Club for the 100th PGA Championship Otaegui managed to survive the cut and settled for a T65 by the end of his four rounds.
Adrian likes to keep things simple when it comes to his swing thoughts...
OK, so we know this is an obvious choice but we have our reasons.
With Rory currently only committing to two tournaments on next year's schedule, his European Tour membership is immediately thrown into doubt. He's stated that the decision - though far from set in stone at this point - has been taken with the intention of reviving his major-winning form.
While his determination to return to top of the men's game should be lauded, it's currently ruffling a few feathers. Let's see how this progresses and whether he quietens the discontent by adding a few more stops on the European Tour to his 2018/19 diary.
European Tour chief Keith Pelley was rather diplomatic when asked about the situation at last week's event in Dubai...
Exclusive: @EuropeanTour Chief Executive Keith Pelley has his say on Rory McIlroy’s decision to cut his European Tour schedule (and potentially relinquish membership) in 2019#golf #rorymcilroy pic.twitter.com/t7jUXzu1X5— Robbie Greenfield (@Rob_Greenfield) November 17, 2018
Who are your own players to watch on the European Tour in the upcoming season? Let us know below...
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