Miguel Ángel Jiménez ()Miguel Ángel Jiménez () © Copyright

BTWT: Miguel Ángel Jiménez

In this Been there won that, One of golf’s biggest characters talks Ryder Cup, embracing pressure and the importance of having interests outside sport…

When I was young I was a mechanic, but then the garage closed and so I started working as a caddie for one of my older brothers who was already a professional golfer. I started to play golf quite late, I was 15. Everything is coming a little late for me compared to other players because a lot start before the age of ten, but I’ve gained experience with the years. I still concentrate and work hard, I still want to be successful. I love what I do in my life – that is the main thing.

The Ryder Cup is a unique event, it can’t be compared to any other. Everybody wants to be part of that event, to win it. It’s different because, as a fan, you either cheer for one team or the other team; at other tournaments, you are playing against 150 other players and you have your own people that follow you. The atmosphere really helps you as a player.

Miguel Angel Jimenez ()


The pressure always exists, it’s always there. Maybe because you are the top player in the world, maybe because you have an injury, but mainly because you put it on yourself; you want to make par, you want to make birdies. I like to feel the pressure, I feel comfortable with it. You need to feel pressure to be competitive and the Ryder Cup is always competitive.

The game has changed a little bit over the years. You used to have to move the ball a lot, today is more about power and athleticism. It is amazing what some people do these days, but it was amazing what Gary [Player], what [Arnold] Palmer, what Seve [Ballesteros] were doing before, too. It was a different time.

I have to say that I’ve been lucky to play with some of the greats. I played with Nicklaus [Jack], with Seve, I’ve played with [José] Olazábal , with Faldo, with Tiger [Woods]… I’ve played with all these different generations and I’m proud to be part of this generation today. You have some good characters these days. Rory [McIlroy] is a great player, a great boy. I like him a lot; I think he’s good for the game.

Miguel Angel Jimenez ()


There are a lot of proud moments, every time you win a tournament you feel so proud. The only thing I regret is not being able to spend more time with my sons – that is the negative part of this life.

Everybody is different but for me it is important to have other interests too. I love to ski – I can’t ski now because I broke my leg three years ago, but I love it – and I love to dance. And family; my family is very important to me.

The piece of advice I would give to a new golfer is keep practising, keep your focus and give love to golf, and golf will give you the rest.


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