PGA is the jewel in the crown of the Tour’s Rolex Series, says Scott Drummond

Scott Drummond (Warren Little/Getty Images)
Scott Drummond (Warren Little/Getty Images)

FOR Scott Drummond, there is no debate. The BMW PGA Championship is the flagship event on the European Tour.

The leading players in Europe gather at Wentworth this week for the first of this season’s Rolex Series tournaments.

But, rather than share equal billing with seven other events, Drummond believes this one is in a league of its own.

The 43-year-old enjoyed his greatest week in golf there in 2004, when he held off a stellar field for the biggest win of his life,

Drummond made it a hat-trick for Scottish golf, joining Colin Montgomerie and Andrew Oldcorn as Wentworth  winners,

But Scott knows it’s a title that every single European Tour golfer would like on his CV.

Sadly the creation of the Rolex Series means he is no longer eligible to play in the tournament, despite being a past champion.

Drummond lost his European Tour card in 2010, and now spends his time playing PGA regional events in the South West of England, where he is based.

But he still harbours hopes of one last crack at the big league.

“In the players’ minds, Wentworth will always be the flagship event,” says Drummond.

“The prize money has gone up a lot since I won, but it’s not just that. It has the prestige, the history and, just as importantly, it’s a full-field event with 150 players.

“Wentworth is the home of the European Tour, too, so that adds to it.

“It’s not just the British guys who would say that, but most of the European players as well.

“I won in the last year of Volvo sponsorship and BMW have grown it since then. The Celebrity Pro-Am on Wednesday is now a massive event in itself.

“All round it feels bigger, although it is still the same in terms of exemptions. For winning, I got into The Open and some WGC events.

“It was a horrible feeling not playing Wentworth last year. I really missed it.

“This year, I’m planning on going with a few friends on Friday and watching the golf as it’s still a great week to attend.

“I still really enjoy playing and I would never rule out coming back if I can try to get through to Q-School.

“One of my best friends on Tour, Anthony Wall, has just had to retire after battling hip injuries for a few years.

“Fortunately I’m not in that postion. That’s why I would love to get back on the European Tour, if only for one more year.”

Having come through the Challenge Tour, playing at Wentworth was one of the big attractions for Drummond.

Ranked 435th in the world going into that week, he shot an eight-under-par 64 on the Sunday to beat Angel Cabrera by two shots.

It was quite some triumph around the West Course with Darren Clarke, Sir Nick Faldo and Ernie Els finishing in the top 10.

“That was my biggest week of the year,” recalls Scott.

“I had never played the course before, but I had grown up watching the event on TV.

“My aim was just to have four solid rounds as a good cheque would go a long way.

“Going out in the last group   with Cabrera was fantastic, to be part of that stage with large crowds.

“The front nine was a blur. But it was great to be in the heat of battle on the back nine, and to finish four-four to win was really special.”