• European Masters

Jimenez hits out at invite to 13-year-old

ESPN staff
September 4, 2013
Miguel Angel Jimenez has caused a stir ahead of the European Masters © Getty Images

Miguel Angel Jimenez has criticised the European Tour for extending an invitation to a 13-year-old to play in the European Masters.

Jimenez, who was 48 when he won last year's Hong Kong Open, was introduced on the Crans-sur-Sierre practice range on Wednesday to Ye Wo-cheng, who was 12 in May when he contested the China Open and has since had another birthday.

Jimenez was at odds with a sponsor's decision to give Ye an invitation to compete this week.

"It is nice to see that golf is interesting no matter what the age but for me, a 13-year-old competing against professionals is a little bit too young," Jimenez said.

"People want to start things too early and a 13-year-old should be playing alongside other 13-year-olds and not players averaging 33 years of age.

"No doubt the sponsor wants publicity for the tournament but, I'm sorry, this should not be allowed.

"They should not be pushing kids his age too hard as it could have a disastrous effect on their careers.

"I hope he enjoys himself this week but then I saw him hitting practice balls this morning and he looked very nervous, and he should not be in that position."

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Extracts from this piece first appeared on ESPN.com

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