Joel Girrbach is back in the familiar surroundings of the Golf Club de Genève for this week’s Rolex Trophy and is hoping to draw on memories of past performances as he bids for a maiden European Challenge Tour win.
The Swiss player will tee it up not only on home soil but on a course where as an amateur he enjoyed much success, culminating in victory in his last appearance in Geneva two years ago.
“I have good memories on this golf course,” he said. “The last two tournaments I played here as an amateur I finished third and I won the other one, so I’ll try to keep this in my head this week.
“It’s great to have those memories to draw on, and know I have won here in the past, and only a couple of years ago too – let’s try to do this again this week.”
The 23 year old started his 2016 season well, with a runner-up finish in his second event, the Red Sea Egyptian Challenge Presented by Hassan Allam Properties, but has struggled to replicate that form since and has dropped to 60th place in the Road to Oman Rankings.
With an exclusive field of just 42, this week offers a big opportunity for players to make a significant move ahead of the final few months of the season, and Girrbach is keen to capitalise on his familiarity with the surroundings.
“I know the course quite well from playing it as an amateur, but the tournament is new to me,” he said. “It’s special, it feels like a special week. I know a lot of guys here, I played a lot of amateur events here, so it feels familiar to me.
“The course is beautiful, and it’s always in great condition, and with the changes they’ve made it looks fantastic – it feels almost like a links course with the bunkers and everything, it’s great.
“It’s a big bonus for me to have the chance to play here. If you play good here it’s like opening the door again, especially with some of the tournaments to come. It can change a lot.“I had a good start to the season but the last few weeks I struggled a little bit, so I took three weeks off to try to practise, see my coach, stay at home a bit, and reset. Now I’m looking forward to playing again this week.”