Once known as the Belgian Open and starting in 1910, the newly named Soudal Open had a brief stint as the Belgian Knockout pre-pandemic and features names such as Arnaud Massy, Henry Cotton, Flory Van Donck, Dai Rees, Jose Maria Olazabal, Nick Faldo and Lee Westwood on its honour roll.

Returning to Rinkven International that hosted the knockout format event in 2018 and 2019, the Soudal Open is the last event before the Tour once known as European takes a week off for the PGA Championship in America.

And for those with an interest in these sorts of things, Soudal produces silicone, caulks, polyurethane-foams and adhesives and if sounds familiar can be found on the shelf at your local Bunnings.

DEFENDING CHAMPION: He might not feel like much of a defending champion given he won the event in 2019 when it had a different name and format, but Italy’s Guido Migliozzi is technically the current holder of the Belgian/Soudal Open/Knockout.

RIGHT: Guido Migliozzi enjoys a celebratory drink with the now defunct trophy in 2019. PHOTO: Warren Little/Getty Images.

Migliozzi claimed the title at Rinkven three years ago defeating Darius van Driel and is back to try and defend this week at the same venue.

COURSE: Rinkven International Golf Club was once known as Antwerp International Golf & Country Club, and it won’t surprise you to learn that it is located near Antwerp, one of the major cities in Belgium’s Flemish region.

Home to 36-holes, a composite course from the South and North layouts is used when hosting tournaments here, the heavily tree-lined nature of both courses putting a premium on accuracy and ball striking throughout the week.

Opened for play in the 1980s, the original 27 holes on the site were designed by Paul Rolin, Russell Talley completing updates and to the property that are ongoing according to a masterplan that was implemented in 2014.

Playing to a par of 71, Rinkven will measure 6,331 metres this week.

PRIZEMONEY: US$2,000,000

RELATED: So-called expert golf tips for this week

PLAYERS TO WATCH: Once the tournament host here, Thomas Pieters will be hugely excited about playing tournament golf again at home in Belgium and is a serious chance of taking home the trophy.

Pieters is currently ranked No.36 in the world, in part thanks to a DP World Tour win earlier this year in the desert, and will tee it up here nice and fresh following a spell after a missed cut at Augusta.

Pieters is an exceptional ball striker and has truly found his game again after a couple of years of struggles and familiarity with this week’s host venue should be a major plus.

New Zealand’s Ryan Fox continues his charge back towards the top-100 of the world rankings on the back of great consistency of late, Fox finishing in the top-15 in all three starts since his win at the Ras Al Khaimah Classic earlier this year.

Local hope Thomas Pieters has shown signs of his best golf of late and will be one of the favourites this week. PHOTO: DIRK WAEM/BELGA MAG/AFP via Getty Images.

Tied eighth last week, Fox’s power is always helpful, but he will need his accuracy and short game to be performing this week if he is to keep his run going.

The winner last time this tournament was played is worth keeping an eye on this week to see whether the good vibes and a fondness for the host venue can help him to rediscover his game after a horror run.

Guido Migliozzi has missed eight cuts from 11 starts this year and owns a best finish of T56 so far in 2022. After two made cuts in a row, the Italian would have been feeling good before another weekend off at the British Masters last week, so it will be interesting to see how he performs as he attempts to stop the slide that has seen him drop 90 places in the world rankings in less than a month.

72-HOLE RECORD: 266 (-18, Lee Westwood 2000)

PAST AUSSIE WINNERS: Noel Ratcliffe (1978)

AUSTRALIANS IN THE FIELD: Wade Ormsby, Maverick Antcliff and Zach Murray.

Round 1: Thursday (Fox Sports 503 9pm – 2am)
Round 2: Friday (Fox Sports 503 9pm – 2am)
Round 3: Saturday (Fox Sports 503 10.30pm – 2am)
Round 4: Sunday (Fox Sports 503 9:30pm – 2am)
*AEST, check local guides