The 39-year-old Chawrasia, who was recently awarded the prestigious Arjuna award back home, has won six times on the Asian Tour and out of which, four were events co-sanctioned with the European Tour in India.
Chawrasia, however, has never win on European soil in his 20-year career. He will take aim at the title when he steps up to the tee for the €2.7 million (approximately US$3.25 million) event held at the Crans-sur-Sierre Golf Club.
Placed second on the Order of Merit, Chawrasia will also attempt to chase down leader David Lipsky of the United States on the money list with a strong showing in the Swiss showpiece, which remains as the only tournament on European soil to be co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and European Tour.
“Winning the Arjuna Award back home is a great recognition of what I have achieved in my career. It has been my dream since I was a junior. I am really happy to win the award. Everyone is very happy for me back home. It was nice. I enjoyed my time back home before coming here.
I am just playing my own game. I just want to focus on my own game and not think so much about the Order of Merit crown. I know I am playing well so I will just stick to my routine. If I play good enough, it will come to me.” – said Chawrasia.
Reigning Order of Merit champion Scott Hend of Australia will be seeking redemption when he tees off for his eighth appearance at the Omega European Masters this week.
The 44-year-old Hend battled into a play-off with Alex Noren last year but settled for a runner-up finish after the Swede defeated him with a birdie against a par on the first play-off hole.
Despite playing the course for the first time in his career, Chinese Taipei’s Lu Wei-chih hopes to turn the corner by taking advantage of his feel-good vibes to cap a good showing on the mountains. He has only made two cuts in eight starts on the Asian Tour so far this season.
Did you know?
- Chawrasia came close to winning his first title on European soil at the Made in Denmark tournament two weeks ago. He stayed bogey-free for the first two rounds to trail by one at the halfway stage before eventually finishing in tied-19th place for his best result yet in Europe.
- Chawrasia has only made the cut twice in his last eight appearances at the Omega European Masters. His best result was a tied-24th place finish in 2015.
- Chawrasia capped a successful title defence for his sixth Asian Tour victory and fourth European Tour win at the Hero Indian Open earlier in March.
- Hend is a nine-time winner on the Asian Tour. Out of his nine victories, two were achieved at events co-sanctioned with the European Tour.
- Hend became the first Australian to win the Asian Tour Order of Merit in 2016.
- Hend’s runner-up finish at the Omega European Masters in 2016 earned him his career’s biggest prize purse of € 300,000 (approximately US$358,801) to date.
- Lu is a four-time winner on the Asian Tour. He claimed a sensational win at the Mercuries Taiwan Masters last year as it was his first victory since recovering from a brain surgery which he underwent to remove a non-malignant tumour in 2012.
- During his road to recovery, Lu was advised by doctors not to take long haul flights as it might cause pressure in his brain. That was why he could not play the Omega European Masters even though he had qualified before. Lu decided to play the Swiss showpiece this week as he has recovered from it since.