Double vision: Danish teenage twins Rasmus and Nicolai Hojgaard set sights on playing in the same Ryder Cup team
- The Identical twins hope to pay in the same Europe team at the Ryder Cup
- They first caught the eye at the 2018 World Amateur Team Championship
- Rasmus was first man born this century to win on the European or PGA Tour
But how about identical twins achieving the feat?
Meet Rasmus and Nicolai Hojgaard, two gifted Danes just 19 years old whose dream of playing together in the biennial competition one day is very much rooted in reality.
Identical twins Rasmus and Nicolai Hojgaard hope to pay in the same team at the Ryder Cup
Playing in only his second tour event as a pro at the KLM Open last year, Nicolai came within a holed putt on the 18th green of forcing a play-off against the winner, Sergio Garcia.
Five months later, Rasmus became the first man born this century to win on either the European or the PGA Tour with his victory in the Mauritius Open.
‘We’ve always had this ambition of travelling the world together, playing in the same tournaments and, of course, playing for Europe,’ said Rasmus in a blog on the European Tour website.
It’s Rasmus who has emerged from lockdown to take the tour by storm, finishing third, sixth and second in the first three events on the UK swing to earn himself a major championship debut at the US Open next month.
The Danish twins first caught the eye at the 2018 World Amateur Team Championship
But don’t be surprised if Nicolai, who finished 26th last week, comes up with something of his own over the second half of the swing. Not only is it all but impossible to tell them apart, there’s never been much more than a scorecard width between them golf-wise.
‘There have been seasons where one of us has enjoyed a little more success but it has always evened itself out,’ says Rasmus. ‘When we were 10, we had almost the same handicap and it has been like that ever since.’
Nicolai added: ‘Naturally we are both competitive and we’ve always pushed one another.
‘Even during lockdown we were playing computer games like Call of Duty and Counter-Strike and there was always something riding on it, paying for lunch or something like that.’
It was at the 2018 World Amateur Team Championship that the pair first made names for themselves. Not surprisingly, the event is usually the preserve of the United States, while Denmark had never won it. With nine holes to play the two nations were locked on the same score but, in the closest finish since 1968, the Hojgaards made eight birdies between them over the inward half to beat the Americans by one.
Rasmus became the first man born this century to win on either the European or the PGA Tour
Nicolai, who was the 2018 European Amateur Champion, shot 66 and Rasmus 67. It earned them a spot at the junior Ryder Cup that year in Paris, where they played together in the foursomes, halving their match. They were spectators a few days later at the main event, where the European team was captained by Thomas Bjorn, undoubtedly the greatest Danish golfer.
He’s currently walking from his home in London to Celtic Manor, not to watch Nicolai play — Rasmus is taking a well-earned breather — but to raise money for charity.
It’s clear Bjorn gives them every chance of achieving their Ryder Cup dream and a unique feat.
‘Nicolai and Rasmus have some serious talent,’ he said. ‘It’s been a while since I’ve seen two players this young with such a complete package to be successful.
‘Technique, belief, physique and attitude. The next 25 years are going to be fun to watch.’