Henrik Stenson aims for successful title defence

Former European No 1 Henrik Stenson wants to rediscover the formula with which he created history last year by successfully defending a tournament for the first time in his career.
Henrik Stenson: Battled fatigue. Picture: GettyHenrik Stenson: Battled fatigue. Picture: Getty
Henrik Stenson: Battled fatigue. Picture: Getty

Stenson’s last victory of a phenomenal 2013 came in the DP World Tour Championship and ensured he became the first man to win the FedEx Cup on the PGA Tour and the European Tour’s Race to Dubai in the same year. The 38-year-old has been unable to reproduce such success this season, although he returns to Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai in second place on the money list behind world No 1 Rory McIlroy, whose four wins – including two majors – helped him wrap up the Race to Dubai title with a week to spare.


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“Last year was very special and I know it can’t be as special this year because Rory has already won the overall race,” said Stenson, who was 25-under-par in beating Ian Poulter by six shots here 12 months ago. “But I can make it a very special week for myself by playing well here and hopefully give myself a chance to win. I haven’t defended a title as of yet, so I couldn’t think of a much better place to do it than here this week.

“I’m pretty pleased with the overall performance this year. It was always going to be a tough one and, especially early in the season, it was tough as I was battling a bit of fatigue. From late spring onwards it’s been quite all right and I contended in a few events and had a couple of strong results. Overall it’s not a bad season by any means.”

To enjoy his best-ever season on the European Tour, Stephen Gallacher needs to jump at least two spots from 15th on the money-list. He also needs to stay in the top 15 to earn a slice of the “Bonus Pool”.


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