Quiros survives roller coaster in Dubai
BY Bruce Young | European PGA Tour | 2011 Dubai Desert Classic | Wrap | 14 Feb 2011
Spain’s Alvaro Quiros has threatened to win a significant event for several months now and today he carried out that threat by winning the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.
Following his top then finishes at the Dubai World Championship (8th), the Volvo Golf Champions (8th) and last week’s runner-up placing in Qatar, Quiros took the title by one shot over South African James Kingston and Dane Andres Hansen.
One of a large group who started the final day one behind the leaders, Quiros was quick to pounce with an eagle at the second and birdies at the 3rd and 5th but at the 7th his chances appeared to vaporise when racked up a triple bogey 7 after his ball stuck in a tree. He repaired some of the damage at the 9th with a 20 foot birdie putt but the crucial blow would come at the par three 11th hole.
Quiros, with just a wedge in hand, found the bottom of the cup for a hole in one and was back on top of the leaderboard. Hansen went ahead with an eagle of his own at the 13th but when Quiros birdied the 16th and Hansen bogeyed the 15th the Spaniard was ahead to stay.
“I’m very proud of myself,” Quiros told European Tour Radio. “Even if I had not won the tournament I would have been because I was fighting all the way and then making a triple bogey at the 8th and recovering from that situation I think is something good.
“I thought after having the good start and with the windy conditions and the rough and the quick greens even if someone started playing really good I am still going to have a chance. Then I saw that no-one was moving but the main thing was that I was able to recover.
“This is great to beat this strong field but in the end all the great players that I beat this week they beat me more often than I beat them so I want to think that I am going to be more often in contention.
“This is a great moment to have reached 21st in the world but the important thing is not just to reach this number but to hold and improve that position.”
Hansen missed one last birdie opportunity at the final hole and tied for second with Kingston who produced the best round of the day from those in the second half of the final day field. His round of 67 moved him through a jam packed from 13th overnight to share second.
Fourth position was shared by West Australian Scott Strange, Spain’s Alvaro Velasco and Frenchmen Jean-Baptiste Gonnet.
For Strange it was his best finish on the European Tour since his win at the Volvo Open in China nearly two years ago.
Brett Rumford faltered in the difficult final day conditions to finish 20th after starting the final round just one behind, Danny Lee put together an impressive final round of 67 to finish 42nd and Mark Brown was 55th.
The European Tour now plays the Avantha Masters in New Delhi.