Journey to Jordan No. 2 fight between Hague and Langley for Trophee Hassan II start

Castle Royle’s David Langley leads the MENA Tour’s Journey to Jordan order of merit heading into the 2020 Journey to Jordan No. 2 tournament at Ayla Golf Club
David Langley is currently top of the Journey to Jordan Order of Merit on the MENA Tour and can earn a start on the Euoropean Tour at the Trophee Hassan II, in June, this week.

IT promises to be a fascinating battle between David Langley and David Hague in this week’s $75,000 Journey to Jordan No. 2, with a European Tour start up for grabs.

The English duo are chasing the big reward of a spot in the European Tour’s Trophee Hassan II.

The Order of Merit leader at the end of the first five events on the 2020 MENA Tour receives an invitation to the €2.5million Trophee Hassan II, in Morocco from June 4-7.

The lucky player will also receive free accommodation in the official hotel for that week.

After the fourth leg of the season, Journey to Jordan No. 1 winner Langley currently leads the Order of Merit with $24.909 – a lead of $784 over Hague winner of the Royal Golf Club Bahrain Open, who has earned $24,125 so far this season.

The equation is simple. With $400 assured for the last-placed player in the tournament, Hague will have to finish inside a two-way tie for the 12th place to have any chance of overtaking Langley.

Having won at the Greg Norman-designed Ayla Golf Club last month, Langley, from Berkshire’s Castle Royle GC, probably starts as a pre-tournament favourite.

Yorkshireman Hague missed the cut at Ayla in his first start as a professional golfer, having opened with a disappointing 81.

However, current form would give the Malton & Norton GC member an advantage heading into Journey to Jordan No. 2, which starts today (Monday).

Last year’s Lee Westwood Trophy winner finished first in Bahrain with three solid rounds in windy conditions, last week.

Meanwhile his 25-year-old rival from Marlow, in Buckinghamshire, endured a tough final round in the same tournament and recorded a 79.

Langley, who lost his father to a long-term illness late in 2019, said: “Absolutely. The spot in Morocco is on my mind and if someone else in my situation says they are not thinking about it, they’d probably be lying.

“But it is not something that is going to control my shots during the tournament. It is something you think outside of it. I will be focused on each shot that I hit when I play the tournament.

“I have very happy memories of this golf course, and obviously, having played it quite a few times, I am very familiar with it.

“I drove the ball very well and made almost every putt from inside 10 feet when I won the Journey to Jordan No. 1, and I will have to do pretty much the same again this week,” said the former England amatuer international.

Chris Garrity, general manager of Royal Golf Club, with David Hague and Saud Al Sharif, the low amateur in the Bahrain Open
David Hague (left) after his win in the Bahrain Open last week

Hague, who turned pro after MENA Tour Qualifying School at the same venue, said he did not touch his clubs after playing the pro-am in Bahrain a day after his victory.

“I got into Aqaba only last night after facing a few travel issues and Sunday was the first day I actually practiced.

“It’s been a crazy couple of days with so many messages from friends and people I know. I am so looking forward to going back home next week, but I have a job to do before that,” said Hague, who was a team-mate of Hague at the 2018 Home Internationals.

“I won’t say Morocco is my top priority right now. I am pretty good at taking every competition as it comes.

“It’s just a consequence of playing well and that’s what I’d be focused on this week.

“I did not have a great start to my professional career here, but I am looking forward to competing on this course,” added Hague, who was a junior at the same North Yorkshire club as European Tour winner Simon Dyson.

“I think I was too aggressive here the last time and threw away a few shots through careless mistakes. That’s something I want to avoid.

Langley and Hague have been paired together for the first two rounds and start their campaigns on Monday at 9.20am local time.

•To follow live scoring in the Journey to Jordan No. 2 click here.