Cambo heads for title defence

Kiwi Michael Campbell heads to Thailand to defend the Johnnie Walker Classic in Bangkok...

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Martin Park
Wed, 15 Nov 2000
Cambo heads for title defence

A year ago, New Zealand's Michael Campbell was just starting to show the form that nearly won him the 1995 Open Championship at St Andrews. But instead of floundering this time, the affable Kiwi caught light and was the hottest player on planet golf as he strolled to a seemingly effortless five wins during the winter months and the following season.

Cambo heads for title defence
Cambo…defending his first title this year
Cambo heads for title defence

Cambo returns to Asia this week to defend his title this week at the Johnnie Walker Classic in Bangkok, and with Lee Westwood and South African Ernie Els pulling out, the 31-year-old Kiwi is one of the favourites to win.

But Tiger Woods is returning to his mother's homeland and will be swamped by the many adoring fans who seem to exude a pious devotion to the World number One thanks to his Thai connection.

Spanish sensation Sergio Garcia is also in the running for the £900,000 event at the Alpine Golf and Sports Club.

But after the best season in the Kiwi's career, he is looking to add to it this season in this, the first counting event for the 2001 European Tour order of merit.

"The victory turned my whole career around and it had a snowball effect," Said Campbell.

"I feel like my game has gone to the next level to a point that whenever I enter a tournament I can play against some of the best players and have a chance to win," he said.

After the Johnnie Walker Classic last year, Campbell went on to win four more titles in the Heineken Classic, the New Zealand Open, the Ericsson Masters and the Linde German Masters.

"In hindsight, my improvement has to be because of the confidence factor. Big time,"
"My game is sound at the moment and hopefully, on Sunday, I'll hold the trophy again".

Nick Faldo, who won the Johnnie Walker Classic in 1990 and 1993 is plotting up in search of some valuable Ryder Cup points for next year.

Cambo heads for title defence
The Guvnor is looking for some points
Cambo heads for title defence
While it has been a promising season for Faldo, he still feels a win is just around the corner and the 42-year-old six time major winner is confident that it will happen soon.

"I am still waiting for the breakthrough. I've raised the level of all areas of my game. The key thing is to get in there with the leaders and to start playing under that bit of tournament pressure," he said. "I find it hard to play when I'm out of it."