Wednesday, October 09, 2013



 Shane Lowry is hoping to capitalise on his recent fine form to become the first player to successfully defend the Portugal Masters, which tees off on Thursday at Oceânico Victoria Golf Course at Vilamoura on the Algarve.
The Irishman captured his second European Tour title 12 months ago – his first as a professional – and has continued to impress this season with five top ten finishes, including a share of third place in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship on his last appearance. 
Lowry led on the back nine of the final round in St Andrews a fortnight ago, and despite not winning, he is taking the positives from another experience of being in contention. 
“It's just all about building experience and going from there,” said the 26 year old. “You learn to be comfortable when you see your name on the leaderboard on a Sunday afternoon. It's hard to not get ahead of yourself and not think about winning. 
“I gave myself a great chance. I'm playing quite well recently, so I'm coming here in good form and really looking forward to this week.
 “I feel like I've been pushing to win tournaments this year, and I just learn from every week and one of these weeks when I give myself a chance, I'm sure I'll pull it off.” 
Ryder Cup stars Paul Lawrie, Martin Kaymer, Nicolas Colsaerts and Francesco Molinari are in a star-studded field for the €2million event, as is Englishman Tom Lewis, who won the title two years ago on only his third start as a professional. 
The Portugal Masters is the penultimate event on the International Schedule before the Final Series, so those players outside the top 110 in The Race to Dubai will be looking for a strong performance in order to retain their playing rights for 2014.



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