Golf-China win a step on road to Ryder Cup dream-Brier

Updated: 2007-04-16 08:55

Markus Brier's first European Tour win on foreign soil at the China Open was just a step on his path to his dream of becoming the first Austrian to represent Europe in the Ryder Cup.

The 38-year-old, who became the first from his country to win on the Tour at his home open last year, turned a one-stroke advantage into five on Sunday to pick up the biggest cheque of his career.

"I'm in China, it's just very far away from Austria," he said "It make you feel an even better player, because at home I always had the home advantage and the crowd was totally behind me.

"It's the next step to win abroad, so I'll go from here and my goals are getting nearer and nearer."

Brier, who admits to being a late developer in golfing terms, said those goals were to play in majors and represent his continent against the Americans in the Ryder Cup.

"It's a dream, but the win here brought me a step forward," he said. "When I came on tour seven years ago, I was far away from thinking I could win a tournament, but you have to believe.

"OK, I probably need five or six weeks like that to get into the Ryder Cup, but why not? I think my game was really good this week. Of course there's no Ryder Cup this year (but) I'll just stick to what I'm doing, that's my way."

The cheque for $333,330 would certainly come in handy, Brier said, but he did not play golf for the cash.

"The money is good but I don't think about it, my goals are the Order of Merit rankings and getting to play in the majors and then the money comes with it," he said.

"I don't think about it when I'm playing because that would make me crazy if I missed a putt."

Another man keen for more success is his Austrian caddie Max Zechmann, who grabbed the flag from the 18th green as a souvenir as he did when Brier won at his home Fontana course in Vienna.

"He's definitely more than just a caddie, he's a good friend of mine," he said. "It works out well and now he's got his second flag, he wants 10 or so."

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