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Defending champion West ruled out of Open

A new Bermuda Open champion will be crowned this year.

Eric West, the reigning champion, has ruled himself out of next week's 72-hole tournament at Port Royal Golf Club because of other commitments.

“I have a scheduling conflict unfortunately,” said West, who won last year's Open by nine shots. “I love playing in the event, so I am disappointed that I will not be able to make it.”

West, who is studying psychology at Harvard University, plays on the European Challenge Tour.

Michael Sims, Terence Daniels and former winners Dwayne Pearman and Daniel Augustus have been left to carry Bermuda's hopes in a professional division that also featuring players from Europe, Australia and North America.

Among the overseas players returning is Bob Kurtz, who plans to play in both the Bermuda Open and Grey Goose World Par 3 Championship at Turtle Hill Golf Club from March 28 to 30.

Regarded internationally as “Golf's Ironman” for his record- setting golf marathons, Kurtz rates the Port Royal and Turtle Hill courses highly.

“I instantly thought Port Royal was one of the great courses in the world and I've played most of them,” he said. “Then I played in the World Par 3 Championship and had the time of my life.”

In 1980, the Senior Tour player went into the Guinness World Records for the most holes played in a week — 1,850 at Quail Creek Golf Club in North Alabama. All monies raised through Kurtz's golf marathons benefit abused children through his charity, Ministry To Children.

Bermudian professional golfer Eric West

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Published March 21, 2014 at 9:00 am (Updated March 21, 2014 at 1:18 am)

Defending champion West ruled out of Open

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