The Race To Dubai and the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai put a fitting end to one of the best seasons I have ever seen on the European Tour. We had it all on Sunday, The world number one, Rory McIlroy and the world number two, Luke Donald teeing it up in the final round at the Greg Norman designed World Course on the Jumeriah Golf Estates in Dubai. We also had 60 of the worlds top players playing for the all of the marbles.
Rory McIlroy would birdie the last five holes to overcome a surge from Justin Rose who broke the course record by two strokes in an effort to spoil his day, and indeed win all of the titles and money.
Luke Donald, who didn’t appear to be feeling well, had is poorest showing in the tournament. Donald picked up his first bogey at the third hole, and another at 12 to fade into a two-way tie with Charl Schwartzel for third place. Schwartzel, who was playing in the next to last group with fellow South African, Louis Oosthuizen, shot a -4 under 68.
Oosthuizen began the day with birdies at one and two, but was never really able to get his putter going. He picked up a couple of birdies on the back nine, but after a bogey four at the par 3 17th hole, finish alone in fifth place at -17 under par. He shot a -3 under 69 on Sunday.
After shooting a course record tying 64 on Thursday, Sergio Garcia climbed 22 positions in the final round shooting a 64, and ending his week tied for ninth place. Had it not been for horrible first and third rounds of 73, Garcia may have been in contention at the end. Two double bogeys at 17 and 18 on Saturday dashed any hopes of catching the leaders.
Fredrik Andersson Hed had another good round on Sunday, shooting a -6 under 66, he also climbed back into the tournament, and finished tied with Garcia at -9 under par. other 68’s that ended in ninth place were Padraig Harrington, and Spain’s Gonzalo Fdez-Costano. Harrington had five birdies on the day, but a double bogey at the 10th hole to the shine off of the eagle three he made at the finishing hole. Costano had a good week, but couldn’t make enough birdies in the final three rounds to capitalize on his first round 66.
UBS Hong Kong champion, 48 year old Miguel Angel Jimenez shot a final round -7 under 65 to climb 20 spots, and end his run in a tie for 16th at -12 under par.
The final Race To Dubai standings found Rory McIlroy retaining his number one position, but Justin Rose finished in second place with his record-setting finale in Dubai. Louis Oosthuizen finished third, former runner-up Peter Hanson from Sweden finished in fourth position. Hanson shot -2 under on Sunday for a 16th place tie. Ian Poulter, Branded Grace, Luke Donald, Francesco Molinari, Graeme McDowell, and Paul Lawrie rounded out the top ten.
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