Teeing up at one of the most popular events on the European Tour includes two-time winner Ian Poulter, home favourite Francesco Molinari, who has also been victorious twice, and defending champion Tyrrell Hatton.
Hatton has continued his impressive run of form in 2018, posting three top ten finishes including third-placed finishes at the WGC-Mexico Championship and the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.
Winning the Italian Open in 2000 and 2002, Poulter has had two top ten finishes in the European Tour this year as well as returning to the Winners Circle on the US PGA Tour, making it a strong start to 2018.
In 2016, BMW PGA Championship winner Molinari became the first Italian player to win the competition for a second time and he has now confirmed he will be going for his third title this year. Molinari has a brilliant record in his home country, including six top ten finishes as well as his two victories. Could he make this his third Italian Open win?
His brother Edoardo, who was also part of the winning Ryder Cup team at Celtic Manor in 2010, is another favourite of the Italian crowds and will also return to the event this week.
Recent event winners Alexander Levy, world number four Jon Rahm and Swedish duo Alexander Bjork and Joakim Lagergren will also fancy their chances of building on their impressive recent form, whilst they will also have one eye on the upcoming majors this summer.
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