Ryder Cup berth secure, Jimenez back at Omega European Masters as usual

miguel angel jimenez
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Though he lives on the Spanish coast, Miguel Angel Jimenez has been traveling high into the Swiss Alps to play the Omega European Masters for more than two decades.
By
Mark Garrod
PA Sport

Series:

The European Ryder Cup campaign might have exhausted him, but Miguel Angel Jimenez was still not going to cancel his annual trip up into the Swiss Alps this week.

"I never miss that tournament," said the 46-year-old Spaniard, who is competing in the Omega European Masters at Crans-sur-Sierre for the 22nd successive time.

Winning the title for the first time would be the perfect way for Jimenez to celebrate earning a fourth Ryder Cup berth against the Americans at Celtic Manor on Oct. 1-3.

Jimenez, twice a winner already this season, made a late decision to play last week's Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles because he was in danger of losing his place in Europe's side. It turned out that he could have gone to his nephew's wedding as originally planned and still made the team, but Jimenez finished tied for third anyway.

"I could have stayed home, but you cannot leave it in somebody's hands,” he explained. "My family and my nephew and everybody was behind me and said, 'that's what you have to do,' so that's what I did and here we are.

"Nobody needs to do nothing in this life. You can sit in any place and look how the days and the hours are going through your life,” he added. "But it's not what we are here for. We are here to learn and do something, not sit there and look what happened."

Italian Edoardo Molinari, whose fabulous win on Sunday was followed an hour later with a wild card from Colin Montgomerie, is the only other member of the Ryder Cup team taking part. Molinari has been paired in the first two rounds with 55-year-old Greg Norman, who finally returns to action almost a year after shoulder surgery.

The Australian star's last appearance at the event was five years ago -- and his best finish of third was way back in 1980.

Reigning British Open champion Louis Oosthuizen is also part of the field.