Wie Shares Center Stage with Garcia


European TourWith their Ryder Cup team officially set, the European Tour heads into Switzerland for the Omega European Masters at Crans-sur-Sierre, home to some of the most breathtaking views they see all season long.
And in addition to the scenic views, European fans this year will also get to see American teen sensation Michelle Wie, who will become the second female - but first on European soil - to tee it up on tour following Laura Davies' attempt at the 2004 ANZ Championship in Australia.
Michelle Wie
Michelle Wie hopes for a big breakthough when she tees it up this week in Switzerland.
The last time she teed it up against the men, it wasn't the competition that brought down Wie but rather Mother Nature.
Last seen at a men's event - the John Deere Classic in July - Wie was being taken away in an ambulance after suffering from heat exhaustion. Here, she will have no problem with the heat and so her focus will instead be on the competition.
I am honored to play in my first European Tour event and am very happy that Omega has extended this invitation, said Wie, who has played against the men nine previous times on several professional tours. I am very excited to play against the best professional golfers in Europe in the magnificent setting of Crans-sur-Sierre.'
Wie has played twice against the men this season on the PGA TOUR, missing the cut by four shots at the Sony Open in January and withdrawing from the John Deere. She did, however, breakthrough to make the cut at an Asian PGA event in May.
In her seven tournaments against females this season, Wie has posted six top-five finishes including tying for third in both the U.S. Womens Open and the LPGAs Kraft Nabisco Championship.
The competition for Wie this week in Switzerland starts with none other than last year's champion Sergio Garcia, who also happens to own at home on the course, just off the first tee box.
Though many of the top Europeans are taking the week off after the conclusion of the Ryder Cup points race, Garcia will be back to defend the title he won last year over fellow Ryder Cuppers Paul Casey and Luke Donald.
It turned out to be a wild week for Garcia, a week which saw him hole out for an eagle to maintain his lead in Rd. 3 and a chip in for a birdie late in Sunday's final round. The fiery Spaniard also received a fine from tour officials after taking out his frustration from a three-putt by kicking an advertising board during the tournament.
Others in the field this week hoping to finish above the 16-year-old Wie, are Miguel Angel Jimenez, who was left off the Ryder Cup team, last year's runner-up Peter Gustafsson and two-time winner of this event Eduardo Romero. The 52-year-old native of Argentina recently won the Champions Tour final major of the year, the JELD-WEN Tradition.
The Golf Channel will carry exclusive coverage of the Omega European Masters beginning Thursday at 9:30 a.m. (ET).
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