Kaymer is top rookie

By Brian Keogh

Germany's Martin Kaymer was named Rookie of the Year - less than 48 hours after a rules bust up with Padraig Harrington

The Dusseldorf ace, 22, added another top ten to his CV at Valderrama when he took sixth place in the Volvo Masters to finish 41st on the Order of Merit with €754,691.

But his rules fiasco on the fourth hole completely wrecked Harrington's concentration and his bid to retain the Order of Merit.

Harrington praised Kaymer after playing with him in Friday's second round, saying: "He's very talented, that's for sure. He hits the ball great. I would have loved to be like him at 22 years of age. Looks like a real player to watch out for the future."

But refused to say anything about the German's rules entanglement on Sunday night and is determined to bounce back from his Valderrama disappointment in this week's HSBC Champions Tournament in Shanghai.

Harrington said: "The Champions has one of the strongest fields outside of the majors and it would be a great event to win to kick off my 2008 season and boost my year-end ranking."
World No 2 Phil Mickelson and No 4 Ernie Els lead a cosmopolitan field in the battle for Asia's richest prize - €575,445.

Vijay Singh, Angel Cabrera and Retief Goosen are also in action and with world No 1 Tiger Woods skipping the $5 million event for the first time, Mickelson is the man to beat.

Tied for 23rd on his Asian debut in Singapore last week, Mickelson plans to play more events around the world.

He said: "China is a country I've heard so much about. I would really like to win an international title of this magnitude, especially as I will be competing against so many great winners from the different tours."

The Champions is co-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours, the PGA Tour of Australasia, South Africa's Sunshine Tour and the China Golf Association.

New European No 1 Justin Rose will also tee it up in the 89-man event, which will feature a cut for the first time this year.