European Golf Tour
PGA European - Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship Preview
From The Sports Network

DATES: Thursday, January 16th through Sunday, January 19th
SITE: Abu Dhabi Golf Club (National Course), Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
COURSE ARCHITECT: Peter Harradine (1998)
PAR: 72
YARDAGE: 7,583
Hole-By-Hole:1 - Par 4 409 Yds10 - Par 5 582 Yds
2 - Par 5 599 Yds11 - Par 4 417 Yds
3 - Par 4 429 Yds12 - Par 3 186 Yds
4 - Par 3 174 Yds13 - Par 4 413 Yds
5 - Par 4 468 Yds14 - Par 4 490 Yds
6 - Par 4 468 Yds15 - Par 3 177 Yds
7 - Par 3 199 Yds16 - Par 4 475 Yds
8 - Par 5 597 Yds17 - Par 4 482 Yds
9 - Par 4 456 Yds18 - Par 5 562 Yds
--------------------------
36 3,799 Yds36 3,784 Yds
 
Annual:  9th
Television:  Golf Channel - Thursday/Sunday -- 4-8 a.m. (et)
Defending Champion:  Jamie Donaldson
Runner-Up:  Justin Rose, Thorbjorn Olesen
Tournament Record:  264 (Martin Kaymer, 2011)
54-Hole Record:  197 (Paul Casey, 2009)
36-Hole Record:  131 (Martin Kaymer, 2008)
Course Record:  62 (Henrik Stenson, 2006)
Total Purse:  $2,700,000
Shares:  1st Place - $450,000; 2nd Place - $300,000; 3rd Place - $169,020
 
2013 Finish
PlayerScorePlayerScore
Jamie Donaldson274David Howell279
Justin Rose275Martin Kaymer279
Thorbjorn Olesen275Joost Luiten279
Ricardo Santos277Eight players at280
Branden Grace278
 
Past Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship Winners
YearWinner (Score) -- Runners-Up
2013Jamie Donaldson (274) -- Justin Rose, Thorbjorn Olesen
2012Robert Rock (275) -- Rory McIlroy
2011Martin Kaymer (264) -- Rory McIlroy
2010Martin Kaymer (267) -- Ian Poulter
2009Paul Casey (267) -- Louis Oosthuizen, Martin Kaymer
2008Martin Kaymer (273) -- Henrik Stenson, Lee Westwood
2007Paul Casey (271) -- Peter Hanson, Miguel Angel Jimenez
2006Chris DiMarco (268) -- Henrik Stenson

Top Contenders in the Field
Player20062007200820092010201120122013
Jamie Donaldsonmc---T-23T-50T-21T-11T-30Won
Thorbjorn Olesen------------------T-8T-2
Branden Grace------------------mc5th
Martin Kaymer---mcWonT-2WonWonmcT-6
George Coetzee------------------T-6T-9
Peter HansonT-61T-2T-43T-10T-11mcT-35T-9
Matteo Manassero------------73rdT-37T-6T-23
Padraig Harrington---T-5T-11T-5---mcT-35T-23
Richard GreenT-20T-29T-17T-26T-13T-31T-63T-23
Henrik Stenson2nd8thT-2mcT-21T-42mcT-23
Paul CaseyT-45WonmcWonT-27T-18---T-23
Thomas BjornT-24T-47T-67mcT-43mcT-3T-52
Paul LawriemcT-20T-30T-20T-27mcT-8T-52
Rory McIlroy------T-11T-53rd2nd2ndmc
Robert Rock---T-59---T-47mcmcWonwd
Sergio Garcia3rdT-14---T-8T-13---T-12---
Miguel A. Jimenez5thT-2T-43mcmcT-11T-42---
Luke Donald------T-11---------T-48---
Phil Mickelson---------------T-37------
Sports Network Selections

Pick to Win - Sergio Garcia
Darkhorse - Branden Grace
 
Last Week's Pick to Win (Charl Schwartzel) - Finished tied for 15th
Last Week's Darkhorse (David Lynn) - Finished tied for 22nd
 
NOTES:The European Tour travels to the United Arab Emirates this week
for the ninth year of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, which boasts an outstanding field, including four of the top 10 players in the world. Henrik Stenson (3), 2013 British Open champion Phil Mickelson (5), Rory McIlroy (7) and Sergio Garcia (10) are making their first appearances of 2014 this week.

Stenson is coming off a year which saw him win three times between the PGA and European Tours. He captured the FedExCup on the PGA Tour and won the European Tour Race to Dubai. Stenson was named the 2013 European Tour Player of the Year. Mickelson also won three times between the PGA and European Tours last season, including his fifth major championship at the British Open.

Martin Kaymer will be looking for his fourth victory at this event. He won in 2008, 2010 and 2011, finished tied for second in 2009 and tied for sixth in 2013. This week, Kaymer can join Tiger Woods, Tom Watson, Bernhard Langer, Seve Ballesteros, Nick Faldo, Mark McNulty and Miguel Angel Jimenez as the only players to win the same European Tour event at least four times.

Last year, Jamie Donaldson carded rounds of 67-70-69-68 and came from behind on the final day to win by one stroke over Justin Rose and Thorbjorn Olesen. Donaldson finished at 14-under 274 for his second victory on the European Tour.

In 2012, Robert Rock trumped some of the best players in the world, including McIlroy and Tiger Woods, to win by one stroke over McIlroy and two over Woods. Rock shot rounds of 69-70-66-70 to finish the championship at 13-under-par 275.

Kaymer fired four rounds in the 60s to repeat as champion in 2011. Kaymer cruised to an 8-stroke win over McIlroy and set a new tournament scoring record, finishing at 24-under-par 264 to break the old mark by three shots at Abu Dhabi Golf Club's National Course.

Despite a 2-over 74 in the final round of 2008, Kaymer walked away with his first European Tour title. Kaymer established a new 36-hole record at 131. He became the youngest German winner in European Tour history at 23 years and 24 days old. Langer previously was the youngest German to win at 23 years and 38 days old when he won the 1980 Dunlop Masters.

American Chris DiMarco shot 63-67 over the final two rounds in 2006 with his wife, Amy, as his caddie to win. DiMarco finished at 20-under-par 268 for his first win on the European Tour. It was the first European Tour event DiMarco played outside the four major championships and the World Golf Championship events. It was also his first win anywhere since the 2002 Phoenix Open on the PGA Tour. DiMarco has not won a tournament since winning here in 2006.

This is the first of a three-week stay in the Gulf for the European Tour, followed by the Commercialbank Qatar Masters and Omega Dubai Desert Classic. Chris Wood will defend his title next week in Qatar.

01/14 16:32:10 ET

As of January 14, 2014, at 04:32 PM ET