It’s all go for January after the R&A and USGA published their finalised Rules of Golf. So what’s coming in? Steve Carroll outlines the changes.
Jimenez Will Defend Hong Kong Title
Spaniard Miguel Angel Jimenez has confirmed that he will be in Hong Kong to defend his title when the Hong Kong Open rolls around from December 5-8.
Record-breaking Jimenez became the oldest winner in European Tour history when he triumphed at Hong Kong Golf Club in November last year aged 48 years and 318 days, beating the record previously held by Irishman Des Smyth in the 2001 Madeira Islands Open.
Jimenez played a master-class of golf to make it a Hong Kong hat-trick, adding to previous victories at Fanling in 2005 and 2008 respectively. The charismatic Ryder Cup star’s approach play was second to none and in the end he signed for a five-under par 65 in the final round to hold off Fredrik Andersson Hed by one shot.
“It was an honour to win in Hong Kong last year and create a new European Tour record, and I’m very much looking forward to returning to defend my title,” said Jimenez.
“I’ve had a lot of success at Hong Kong Golf Club in the past and it’s a place I love playing at. I love the city and the energy there; and there’s so much to see and do. The golf course is magnificent and I always tend to play well there, so naturally I relish going back.
“The history of the golf club makes it very special and the people always make us feel very welcome.”
Jimenez and his fine vein of form follows a hefty lay-off for the Spaniard where he needed to recover from a broken leg in April, and has since notched four top five finishes, including a play-off defeat to Joost Luiten in the KLM Open, to lie 17th in The Race to Dubai.
The Hong Kong Open is the third tournament on the 2014 International Schedule and will be the 13th staging since it became part of the European Tour in 2002.
The Hong Kong Open was first played in 1959 and has a star-studded list of past champions, including Tom Watson, Greg Norman, Colin Montgomerie, José María Olazábal, Ian Poulter and Rory McIlroy.