BMW PGA Championship: A look ahead to this week's showdown at Wentworth

By Dave Tindall.   Last Updated: 19/05/14 4:19pm

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Aerial view of the clubhouse complex at Wentworth

Aerial view of the clubhouse complex at Wentworth

Sky Bet

A world-class field heads to Wentworth this week to contest the 60th running of the European Tour's flagship event.

The BMW PGA Championship has produced some incredible drama down the years and 12 months ago Italy's Matteo Manassero, aged 21, became the youngest winner in the event's history.

This year Luke Donald, the champion in 2011 and 2012, will be looking to become only the fifth player in history to win the event three times or more. If successful, he would join Sir Nick Faldo (a four-time winner) and triple trophy winners Colin Montgomerie, Bernhard Langer and Peter Alliss.

Here's our look ahead to the showdown at Wentworth:

Watch Wentworth on Sky

Sky Sports has 28 hours of live coverage from Wentworth starting on Thursday at 10am on Sky Sports 4. Here, Justin Rose, Ernie Els, Rory McIlroy and Paul Casey pay tribute to the course and the tournament. Els describes the event as "the heart and soul of European golf" while Casey describes the layout as "a fantastic test of golf". Friday's coverage also starts at 10am while we'll be live again on Sky Sports 4 at midday on both Saturday and Sunday.

Critchley on Wentworth

Crowds outside the clubhouse at the 1953 Ryder Cup at Wentworth

Bruce Critchley looks back at the history of Wentworth Golf Cub and says it's much more than just a Championship golf course. The Ryder Cup of 1953 was played there, so too the Canada Cup of 1956 - the only glimpse those in the South ever had of Ben Hogan and Sam Snead in competition - and then for the best part of 30 years, the World Match Play Championship each autumn. Bruce also discusses the difficult days and its restoration back into the long, hard, tough inland championship course always intended.

Shot Centre - Wentworth's Front 9

Simon Holmes and Andrew Coltart preview the 1st, 3rd, 8th and 9th holes on the West Course at Wentworth. Simon says the front nine is "incredibly tough" and he and Andrew have pinpointed four of the "pivotal holes". The 1st is a big, strong 473-yard par 4. Hole 3 is a 465-yard par 4, with an uphill second to an undulating green. Hole 8, a 391-yard par 4, has seen some disasters down the years while the 9th is another long (449-yard) par 4 guarded by two big bunkers.

Shot Centre - Wentworth's Back 9

It's back to the Shot Centre where Simon and Andrew preview the West Course's tough and dramatic finish - the 15th, 16th, 17th and 18th which are the key holes for anyone wanting to get their hands on the prestigious trophy. The lengthy par 4 15th measures in at an intimidating 489 yards. At 383 yards the 16th gives players a chance for birdie but sand awaits off the tee. The par 5 17th is now 610 yards so is no easy birdie anymore while the 539-yard par 5 18th tempts players to hit over the water and find the green in two to set up a possible eagle.

Rose optimistic

Justin Rose, who defends his US Open crown next month, says he'd realise a lifetime's ambition by winning the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth. The Englishman says: "Wentworth is a bucket-list tournament for me. You've got the majors and maybe a world event or two but, for me, it's right there with the best tournaments in the world. It's the one I used to go and watch since I was eight years old with a backpack full of sandwiches." Rose has twice finished runner-up (2007 and 2012) so can he go one better?

Miguel to reign again?

Miguel Angel Jimenez celebrates his victory in Spain

The one and only Miguel Angel Jimenez is up to 25th in the world rankings after becoming the first 50 year old to win on the European Tour by claiming the Open de Espana on Sunday. Now, can he bag the trophy at Wentworth? It's certainly a course he loves as he won this title in 2008, was third in 2006, fourth last year and fifth in 2007. In this photo gallery, we take a look at the career of one of the most colourful characters in the game of golf.

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