European Tour: Jon Rahm ready for fresh chance for victory on Spanish soil at Andalucia Masters | Golf News


Rahm headlines a strong field at Real Club Valderrama for second of three consecutive Spanish-based events on the European Tour – watch live on Thursday from 1pm on Sky Sports Golf and Sky Sports Main Event.

Last Updated: 13/10/21 2:34pm

Jon Rahm can move top of the Race to Dubai standings with victory at Valderrama this week

Jon Rahm can move top of the Race to Dubai standings with victory at Valderrama this week

Jon Rahm is looking to bounce back from a disappointing finish to the Open de Espana when he tees it up on home soil again at the Estrella Damm N.A Andalucia Masters.

The world No 1 was in prime position to claim a third consecutive victory of his home Open when he went into the weekend just a shot off the halfway lead in Madrid, only to fade to a tied-17th finish after rounds of 73 and 69 left him six strokes behind tournament winner Rafa Cabrera Bello.

Rahm has another chance to enjoy Spanish success this week at Real Club Valderrama, where victory would move him top of the Race to Dubai standings, with the US Open champion looking to go one better than his tied-second finish at the event in 2019.

“It’s just too bad that the weekend wasn’t what I was looking for,” Rahm said about his Open de Espana display. “I played great early on and gave myself a great chance. Saturday I shot myself out of the tournament, didn’t have a great day, and was too far back to make up the difference.

“There’s always the following week and a following year, so maybe I can get my third next year and I can still get a Spanish victory on Spanish soil this week. It [Valderrama] is just a historic venue for Spanish players.

“Sergio Garcia has done a great job out here and many other Spanish players have played great and have been able to win here, so it would be an honour to join my name to the list.”

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Rahm is joined in the field by Ryder Cup team-mates Matt Fitzpatrick and Bernd Wiesberger, with Robert MacIntyre and Victor Perez among the other names in action, while John Catlin returns as defending champion after claiming a maiden European Tour title in last year’s event.

Catlin came through a final-round tussle with Martin Kaymer in tough conditions to win the 2020 contest, with the American adding further titles at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and the Austrian Golf Open since that breakthrough success.

John Catlin comes into the week as world No 124, despite having three European Tour wins in the past 13 months

John Catlin comes into the week as world No 124, despite having three European Tour wins in the past 13 months

“This was a special win for me last year, being my first win out here here in Europe, especially on a golf course like this,” Catlin said. “I always knew I could win, I’d won quite a few times before, but the European Tour is a whole other level.

“It definitely gave me a lot of confidence, as it was playing very challenge and you had to high-quality shots just to give yourself any chance of birdie. It’s always going to be a special place to come back to and I’m looking forward to the week.”

Watch the Estrella Damm N.A Andalucia Masters throughout the week live on Sky Sports. Live coverage begins on Thursday from 1pm on Sky Sports Golf and Sky Sports Main Event.

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