European Tour Analyst Julian Tutt is in Andalucia, Spain this week for coverage of the Volvo World Match Play. Brandt Snedeker is playing his first round match with Thomas Bjorn wearing sneakers and playing with only 11 borrowed clubs. His clubs arrived after Brandt had played a couple of holes and since he started with only 11 clubs, he was able to take a couple of his own including a driver and a wedge. Snedeker started out so well that he may not have even needed his own clubs.
This is a big week for both Sergio Garcia, Alvaro Quiros, and Ian Poulter. Garcia has an opportunity to increase his odds of being on Olazabal’s team with a win or even a great week and Poulter loves match play so much that he wishes there 25 match play events a year. Tutt thinks that Poulter will definitely be at Medinah but Garcia as well as fellow Spaniard Alvaro Quiros are not definite so this is a big week for both of them.
IMG created the World Match Play in 1964 and featured great fields every year although the quality has declined in recent years. The event has always had an iconic place in European golf and as an exhibition held in October, the best American players would play in tough conditions at Wentworth as invitees for an appreciative audience. Now, it is an event where players qualify instead of being invited and unlike past sponsors, Volvo does not offer appearance fees. While there have been some good years in Spain, the event has been in trouble but Tutt is hopeful that the event will survive and at least have an opportunity to thrive again.