Noren relishing Euro PGA Championship defence

Cape Town – Alex
Noren
will tap into some ‘unreal’ memories when he defends his European PGA
Championship
title next month after claiming the biggest win of his career to
date at Wentworth Club in 2017.

The
Swede ensured the European Tour’s Rolex Series got off to a dramatic start when
he fired a stunning closing 62 for a two shot victory after starting the day
seven strokes back.

He
will now hope to become the first player to defend a Rolex Series title when he
returns to Wentworth Club from May 24-27, with four-time Major Champion Rory
McIlroy, 2017 Race to Dubai champion Tommy Fleetwood and Englishman Paul Casey
joining him the field.

The PGA Championship once again launches the Rolex Series – the eight premium
events on the European Tour’s Race to Dubai – and Noren admits he is looking
forward to returning to the scene of his incredible comeback.

“It’s
by far the biggest tournament I’ve won, and it would be unreal to defend it,”
said Noren. “I think it was a shock to me to win it.

“I
played it ten times before last year and I always thought the golf course was
not up my alley. I made it, in my head, a bigger tournament than it maybe is –
it’s already huge and then I made it feel even bigger.

“Last
year when I finally was a winner in the end it felt incredible.

“I’ve
watched the tournament since I was little, and then you get to play it, then
you make the cut for the first time, so it’s always been a big tournament in my
head and it was amazing to win it.”

The
35-year-old has made a strong start to 2018 with a third place finish at the
WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play in Austin last month, plus a runners-up result
at the Farmers Insurance Open on the PGA Tour at the end of January.

Noren’s
victory at Wentworth Club last year was his ninth European Tour title, and
fourth on British soil following the Wales Open in 2011, Scottish Open in 2016
and British Masters, also in 2016.

This year’s PGA Championship also holds added significance
with Ryder Cup points earned at European Tour events from the PGA
Championship until Made in Denmark multiplied by 1.5 on both the World Points
List and the European Point List.

Noren’s form has put him in contention for a
place.

“I
know I have to play so good week in, week out to get in the team, so it has
been a focus of mine. I’ve started this year a lot better than I have
previously and I’m really happy about that,” Noren explained.

“The
Ryder Cup is quite far away from now, so it’s in the back of my mind, but it
would be amazing to be in it.”

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