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FarawayFairways

Spanish golf in decline?

9 posts in this topic

Sergio is number 3, but then who? a veteran who likes wine and cigars at a slightly improbable 28. Character that he maybe, I doubt anyone would suggest Jiminez is the future, whereas Sergio himself has been described as "experienced" increasingly over the last few years

The credit crunch was particularly brutal on Spain with unemployment reaching something like 25%, it's almost certainly the case too that although they've always been a football country, they experienced an unprecendented level of international success in the last decade which will have coloured the formative influences of the inheritting cohorts. I suspect also that Sergio has no where near the charismatic influence of Seve or Olly in being able to inspire

It's possibly a function also that as more countries enter the market and adopt golf, a squeeze has to be applied to the established order. Last time I checked there was a finite ceiling on the number of top-100 players you could have. I do wonder if there is a bit of a subtle powershift going on with regards to continental Europe though. Traditionally it was the mercurial Spanish supported by the stoic, solid and dependable Swedes. What do we have on todays rankings?

Spain = 3, 28, 64, 65 & 73

Sweden = 4, 46 & 79

Italy = 43, 67, & 97

Germany = 12

France = 22

Denmark = 24 & 98

The Netherlands = 47

Finland = 54

Austria = 70

I'm sure that the Spanish used to have a heavier presence than this, and take out Garcia and that would put 4 coutries best ranked ahead of them.

It's early days perhaps, but 18% of the top-100 made up from continental Europe is one thing, but that  nine separate countries are now represented is the possible start of a power shift. If Nicolas Colsearts can regain his position he'd make it ten for Belgium (long way to go though). There's also the possibility that Alex Levy will become the second Frenchmen to break the top-100 soon as well

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Could it be do to the influx of asian countries in golf?  More countries in the top 100 would mean less positions for Spain as well.  Spain is certainly doing well in woman's golf.

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I could be completely wrong Boogie? perhaps the impression I'd formed about Spanish golf over the years has led to me over-rating its influence? I'm not sure that they have a third generation coming through though?

Reminds me in context of the way Swedish tennis went

Borg

Willander & Edberg

Zero

Ballesteros

Olazabel & Garcia

??????

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At the European Tour quite some victories from Spanish players this year:

- Jimenez twice (Hong Kong and Spanish Open)

- Larrázabal (Abu Dhabi)

- Garcia (Qatar Masters)

- Canizares (Hassan II)

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Part of the issue may be the Ballesteros standard is so high, other Spanish golfers can't match it.  Not only was he a great player, but he was unique in his creativity and had a dashing personality.  That is one tough act to follow.

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¿Que?
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Larrazabal and Cabrera-Bello are still young yet. I think give them a couple years and they'll climb up the rankings. Both have a lot of talent.

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In decline from what? I guess in the scheme of European golfers they've done OK except in comparison to the British Isles but other than Seve, Olazabal, Jimenez and Garcia when have Spanish golfers ever been high on the mountain? The LPGA has a number of good Spanish players right now though.

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Larrazabal, Cabrera Bello, Canizares, Gonzalo Fernandez Castano, Pablo Martin, Jordi Garcia Pinto, Alvaro Quiros, Eddie De La Riva are all pretty young and some are proven winners. I wouldn't be too worried if I was a spaniard. Besides Ollie and Seve, there have not even been any Spanish superstars.
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