Fisher out to seize Masters chance

Ross Fisher aims to take advantage of the absent Lee Westwood in Portugal this week.

Ross Fisher is aiming to take advantage of the absence of defending champion Lee Westwood from this week’s Portugal Masters.
Westwood won last year’s event in Vilamoura by two shots from Ryder Cup team-mates Francesco Molinari and Padraig Harrington, ending a run of more than two years without a title.
However, the Worksop player will not be competing in this year’s event because he is resting following a recurrence of a calf injury.
So Fisher, another member of Europe’s victorious Ryder Cup side, will head for the south of Europe looking forward to the warm conditions, following two weeks of tough conditions in Wales and Scotland.
He told “Let’s hope it’s sunny there,” said Fisher, who is 13th in the current Race to Dubai.
“I could do with some good weather. It has been a very nice in the past. I’ve had enough rain in the last week and a half to last me a lifetime so a bit of sunshine will be very nice.
“I really enjoyed playing at Oceanico Victoria last year. It’s a lovely course – pretty long, which suits my game. I’ve got a good record there and went close a couple of years ago. It’s a place where I usually seem to do well so hopefully that’s the case again.”
The 29-year-old from Cheam has acclimatised well following last Monday’s Ryder Cup success at Celtic Manor.
He continued: “I haven’t really found it difficult to be honest. I’ve just tried to continue my form. When you are playing well you don’t feel tired.
“The Ryder Cup was a great week and I feel like my game is in good shape and it’s continued this week – overall a decent week – and I’m looking forward to next week now.
“My attention has switched back to The Race to Dubai now, definitely. I finished fourth last year and it would be disappointing not to finish better than that this season.
“I’ve obviously got a bit of work to do in order to achieve that but I’ve moved up a bit this week and I’ve got some big tournaments coming up so it’s not over yet.”
Fisher’s Ryder Cup team-mates Miguel Angel Jimenez and brothers Edoardo and Francesco Molinari are also in the field in Portugal, as are Europe’s vice-captains Paul McGinley and Thomas Bjorn.
It will be Jimenez’s first competitive action after his fine performance in south Wales, where he won a crucial point in the final day singles by beating Bubba Watson.
The Spaniard will be looking to climb further up The Race to Dubai – he is currently eighth – with a good performance in Vilamoura.
Similarly, Edoardo Molinari, the highest-ranked player in the field in The Race to Dubai, will be looking to make up ground on the six players above him when the event starts tomorrow.