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Miguel Angel Jimenez © Gallo Images

Olazabal, Jimenez to face Yang, Kim in Brunei

Spanish veterans Jose Maria Olazabal and Miguel Angel Jimenez will battle Korean heavyweights YE Yang and Kim Kyung-Tae in the standout opening-day clash at this week's Royal Trophy in Brunei.

Olazabal will join forces with Jimenez in the last of the four first-day foursomes contests at the event, which pits an eight-strong European team against a powerful Asian line-up.

"As the old guys, we'll stick together," said Olazabal, 46, who led Europe to a famous triumph in the Ryder Cup against America in Chicago less than three months ago.

Jimenez, 48, who became the eldest winner on the European Tour with his victory at last month's Hong Kong Open, anticipates a close match against Kim and Yang.

Yang is Asia's first Major winner, having triumphed in the US PGA Championship in 2009.

"We have a strong team and we're determined to win back the Royal Trophy," said non-playing Asian captain Naomichi "Joe" Ozaki after the draw ceremony on Thursday.

The sixth edition of the Royal Trophy, which follows a similar format to the Ryder Cup, will tee off on Friday with Italian brothers Edoardo and Francesco Molinari facing off against China's Wu Ashun and Japan's Yoshinori Fujimoto.

In game No 2, big-hitting Belgian Nicolas Colsaerts and German Marcel Siem square off against Thai Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Indian Jeev Milkha Singh.

In the third game, Spaniard Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano and Swede Henrik Stenson will take on Korean Bae Sang-Moon and Japanese superstar Ryo Ishikawa.

In the five previous Royal Trophy clashes, Asia has triumphed just once. The tournament in the Southeast Asian sultanate ends Sunday.


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