Head to head golf battles
Volvo World Match Play Championship in Casares, Spain
This week the European Tour is proceeding to Casares, Andalucia for the Volvo World Matchplay Championship. From May 17 to 20 the top players of the world will meet at the Finca Cortesín Golf Club near Málaga for the 47th edition of the tournament. Golf fans are looking forward to this special matchplay event, an exciting head to head competition, involving hole by hole, point by point battles.
At Finca Cortesín the players will be divided into a competition of eight groups of three players to be played out on Thursday and Friday with 16 players progressing to Saturday´sknock-out format with the semis and final played on Sunday.
The unique 24-player tournament is shaping up to be one of the major events of the season. Among the players will be Branden Grace, who has won an amazing number of three titles since coming through the European Tour Qualifying School Final Stage in December.
McDowell, Schwartzel, Poulter, Kaymer and more…
To bag another win, Grace (now number 4 in the Race to Dubai) will have to beat 2010 US Open Champion Graeme McDowell and 2011 Masters Champion Charl Schwartzel and Spanish aces Sergio Garcia, Alvaro Quiros and Rafael Cabrera-Bello. The list of favourites also contains great names like defending champion Ian Poulter, Justin Rose, Darren Clarke, Martin Kaymer, Retief Goosen, Paul Lawrie Peter Hanson.
Long history: from Wentworth to Casares
The World Match Play Championship has quite a long history. It was first held in 1964, crowning Arnold Palmer as the winner. After a break in 2008 (sponsor HSBC withdrew its support), the tournament returned in 2009 with Volvo as the new title sponsor. After many years in which Wentworth Golf Club (England) hosted the event, Finca Cortesín golf course took over and has been praised ever since by players on the Tour. Designed by Cabell Robinson in 2006 at 6800 meters with over 100 bunkers, this is truly one of the finest golf courses in Spain.
Olive and cork trees… and tough holes
In a landscape of olive and cork trees with beautiful flowers and plants, Cabell Robinson, course designer, and Herald Huggan, landscaper of international fame, managed to maintain the natural landscape character of Andulucia. The toughest hole by far at Finca Cortesin is the signature par four 13th hole. At this specatacular hole the players will have to drive into a wide fairway which crosses a water hazard. The spectacular green is bunkered on the right and the left is encircled by trees. The green is large and sloping, allowing for several different pin positions that have as much an affect on the approach shot as the putting.
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