Robert Karlsson is running scared at Valderrama - from Padraig Harrington’s missus.
The Order of Merit leader knows that triple Major winner Harrington can snatch the money title from his grasp in the final edition of the Volvo Masters.
But the giant Swede is even more worried about being jinxed by his pal Harrington’s ever-present wife Caroline.
Karlsson joked: “She’s been around some much nowadays and she’s great. But she’s been dreaming about me and that’s a bad sign.
“She actually dreamt before the US PGA that it was going to be a play-off between me and Padraig.
“She came up and said on the first, ‘I don’t know if this is true or not. I can’t believe this but I dreamt you were in a play-off and you were going to win and now you are leading the PGA.’
“And then Padraig won in the end and I finished 20th. She’s a very scary person.”
Karlsson hasn’t clapped eyes on Caroline Harrington so far this week but he knows that he faces a serious challenge from her husband for the Order of Merit title.
While he has a healthy €297,425 lead over the Open and US PGA champion, Karlsson could be overhauled if Harrington wins the title and he fails to finish second.
Karlsson said: “If Padraig wins, it is going to take a fantastic week from me because this is a hard golf course with a really good field. If he wins, I need to finish second, so I have a tough task in hand.”
Karlsson has had a stellar season, winning twice and grabbing another ten top-10 finishes - with three of those coming in the Majors.
However, he confessed that he has had a massive advantage over his main rival by playing 22 events to just 13 by the Dubliner so far this year.
Karlsson said: “It’s a bit unfair. It’s like Manchester United playing Arsenal and one has to play 13 matches and the other 22. It’s not really a fair judgement of the season but if I win it, I’m not going to complain.”
Harrington reckons that while Karlsson might deserve to win the Order of Merit for his consistency, golf is not always a fair game.
He said: “Robert has performed more consistently in Europe throughout the year, so consistency‑wise, and that's what an Order of Merit is. He probably deserves it, but that doesn't mean he gets it. We have to wait until Sunday to sort that out.”
Harrington and Karlsson are paired together in the final group today but with Lee Westwood and Miguel Angel Jimenez also in with a mathematical chance of taking the Order of Merit with a victory, the Swede will be trying to avoid being sucked into a matchplay situation.
Karlsson explained: “My focus is going to be to do my best this week and I will see on Sunday if it is going to be enough. If I start playing matchplay against Padraig and Westwood, I think we are going to put ourselves in a lot of trouble.”
Harrington faces a massive task to claim a minimum of second place, according to Scot Colin Montgomerie.
The eight-time Order of Merit winner needed to win the Volvo Masters in 1993 and finish second in 1995 to claim the money title and pulled it off both times.
But he warned: "I tell you what, it's bloody difficult. Robert Karlsson is very much in the driver's seat and in golf being a pound ahead is a major step having to beat somebody. It's a difficult position Harrington's in.
“It would be somehow right for Harrington to win the Order of Merit given the year he's had winning two Majors. But then it just shows the consistency of Robert."