Who are the top contenders at MCB Tour Championship 2013?

Golf journalist Matt Cooper reports on the forthcoming MCB Tour Championship in Mauritius

The MCB Tour Championship, held at The Legend, Constance Belle Mare Plage

The MCB Tour Championship, held at The Legend, Constance Belle Mare Plage

It may not be branded quite as obviously as the European Tour’s Race to Dubai, but the conclusion of the Senior Tour has its own version of a yellow brick road and a destination every bit as thrilling at the main tour. The aim for the seniors is to make the season’s final hurrah in Mauritius – at Constance Belle Mare Plage for the MCB Tour Championship.

It’s an event which seals the deal for 2013. After three days of competition on the Legends course the elite field will have been separated and we will know not only the identity of the tournament champion, but the Order of Merit winner and Rookie of the Year will have been crowned too.

In the last three years the trophy has twice been lifted by South Africa’s David Frost, either side of a win by American Tom Lehman. Both men are major championship winners, proof that the cream rises to the top in this event and that’s good news for Scotland’s Colin Montgomerie, who has been a new addition to the senior ranks in 2013.

Known to golf fans across the globe as Monty, he completed 31 victories on the European Tour (only three men have ever earned more) and he wasted little time adding a first senior win, claiming the Travis Perkins Masters at Woburn during the summer, only his third start on the Senior Tour.

The 50-year-old Scot has become a regular member of the Sky Sports commentary team in recent years, but he retains a fierce competitive spirit and has joined the senior ranks with specific aims. Unlike Frost and Lehman he famously never won a major title, but he intends to correct that in the senior versions of those events.

With that in mind he is keen to end the year with another win, as will his fellow Ryder Cup captains Sam Torrance and Ian Woosnam who join him in the field alongside the reigning champion Frost.

In my time as a golf journalist I’ve been to many countries (from Finland to Turkey and Tenerife to Kazakhstan), but this will be my first visit to Mauritius and I’m buoyed by its reputation on tour as one of the best of the year. No-one seems quite sure what to rave about first – the golf course, the hotel, the location or the food.

They also look back to those past winners and remember one of golf’s oldest adages: quality venues reap quality winners. Follow #MCBGolf on social media to see if the trend continues.

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Read more from Matt on Twitter @MattCooperGolf or visit the blog Curious About Golf

 

Paul Wesselingh tops Order of Merit with Taiwan win

With only the MCB Tour Championship left to play, Paul Wesselingh has moved to the top of the European Senior Tour Order of Merit following a win at the Fubon Senior Open in Taiwan.

Paul Wesselingh

Paul Wesselingh

The Englishman has pushed Denmark’s Steen Tinning into second place in the Order of Merit, promising to make the fight for the coveted John Jacobs Trophy at the MCB Championship a dramatic one.

The MCB Tour Championship is held at Constance Belle Mare Plage in Mauritius in December and its prize fund of €400,000 could make the crucial difference in deciding which player gets to raise the trophy.

Wesselingh is reported as saying, ‘It’s great to be back on top of the Order of Merit with a nice lead. It’s going to be between me and Steen to win. I love to play in Mauritius and it’s going to be a very exciting event.’

Wesslingh won the Fubon Senior Open at the Miramar Golf and Country Club in Taiwan with a one shot victory over home favourite Le Wen-the.

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Brown is singing in the rain after Dutch Senior Open victory

Simon P Brown has won his second European Senior Tour title in adverse weather conditions at the Dutch Senior Open.

Simon P Brown

Simon P Brown (Getty images)

Torrential rain on the first day of play and over night on the second at the International in Amsterdam led to the tournament being halted, granting the English-born Brown victory after only two days play.

This is Brown’s first season in the European Senior Tour. The victory puts him fourth in the Order of Merit which could secure him a place in the top six at the end of the Tour, earning him an exemption to all the Senior Majors of 2014.

With just one event to go before the MCB Championship, held in Mauritius at Constance Belle Mare Plage in December, Steen Tinning still has his eye on the Jacobs Trophy, leading the Order of Merit by just under €10,000 ahead of the nearest contender Paul Wesselingh.

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Danish Iron Man Steen Tinning wins again

Danish golfer Steen Tinning secured his second victory of the season at the English Senior Open last weekend.

Legend Golf Course, Mauritius

Legend Golf Course, Mauritius

The win takes him to the top of the Order of Merit with only three events remaining making him a serious contender for first place at the MCB Championship held at Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius in December.

This is Tinning’s first season in the European Tour but being a rookie didn’t stop him fending off Santiago Luna of Spain for a one stroke victory at Rockliffe Hall.

Tinning claimed his Iron Man training gave him an edge helping him to stay focused and finish at 17 under par in front of a crowd of more than 2,000 spectators.

Read the full story of Tinning’s exciting victory on the European Tour website.

Rookie Simon Brown wins Russian Open

Englishman Simon Brown celebrated his eighth senior tour appearance with a win at the Russian Open Golf Championship (Senior) at the Moscow Country Club.

Simon Brown wins the Russian Open

Simon Brown wins the Russian Open

In constant driving rain Brown held off runners-up Mike Harwood and Carl Mason with a 12 under par 204 total.

Having spent most of his golfing career as a professional at Rhein-Sieg Golf Club in Germany, the 55-year-old Brown described his win in Moscow as ‘life changing’.

Thanks to the €97,305 winner’s prize at Moscow, Brown moves from 51st to fifth in the European Senior Tour Order of Merit.

Scotsman Colin Montgomerie, Miguel Angel Martin and Steen Tinning made up a three-way tie for third place.

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Colin Montgomerie storms to victory at Travis Perkins plsc Senior Masters

Scotsman Colin Montgomerie claimed his first win on the European Senior Tour as he stormed to a six-shot victory at the Travis Perkins plc Senior Masters.

Colin Montgomerie storms victorious at Senior Masters

Colin Montgomerie storms victorious at Senior Masters

Montgomerie only became eligible to play senior golf when he turned 50 in June this year, and his win at Woburn has come in just his seventh event.

Spain’s Miguel Angel Martin was runner-up along with Paul Wesselingh, who came in with a best of the week 66, on four under par.

Montgomerie’s win is proof that he will become a key player on the European Senior Tour after a hugely successful career on The European Tour, with 31 titles and eight Order of Merits.

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