The qualification differs from previous years in that past champions and category one players will no longer have automatic exemptions. A player outside the top 60 will not be eligible should anyone who qualifies be unable to compete.
This change places the emphasis firmly on current form, focusing on the performance in the previous 44 Volvo Order of Merit (money list) tournaments leading up to the Volvo Masters Andalucia.
Ken Schofield, executive director of the European Tour, said, The Volvo Order of Merit has, since 1988, been an integral and focal part of the season on the European Tour international schedule, determining the No. 1 player each year and the final positions.
The significance of being No. 1 on the Volvo Order of Merit is constantly being emphasized by the players who have finished in that position, and the new changes for the qualification procedure for the Volvo Masters Andalucia reaffirms the weight of importance placed on finishing in the top 60.