Wood's eagle secures Qatar Masters
BY Bruce Young | European PGA Tour | 2013 Commercial Bank Qatar Masters | Wrap | 27 Jan 2013
An eagle at the par five 18th at the Doha Golf Club in Qatar has given Englishman Chris Wood victory at the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, his first on the European Tour.
Wood, who led by three heading into the final round, double bogeyed early on day four and as firstly George Coetzee and then Sergio Garcia finished their tournaments at 17 under par to set up what appeared might be a playoff, he struck.
Wood was playing the 16th at the time and appeared to need two birdies if he was to snatch victory. He missed an opportunity at the near reachable par four but when he hit his approach to 12 feet at the 17th his chances looked good. With the reachable par five 18th still to come his chances of at least making a playoff were good.
He left his birdie opportunity at the 17th short and so needed a birdie to tie or an unlikely eagle to win. After a massive drive he was left with only a six iron and when that finished ten feet from the hole he was assured of a playoff and had created a chance of victory.
When the putt went in he had secured a victory which not only earns him €310,000 but advances him nearly 80 positions in the world ranking and opens up the possibility of playing the Accenture Match Play Championship in February.
“There’s an enormous weight lifted off my shoulders today,” Wood told European Tour. “I feel like I can go on and win more.
“I knew it was going to be hard no matter how I played – winning on The European Tour is not easy.
“I’ve been knocking on the door in previous times and it’s not happened. To get it today, to get my first win, it’s such an honour. I’m so pleased.”
Garcia birdied six of his last eleven holes including the final two to draw level with Coetzee who had finished twenty minutes earlier with a round of 65 to lead at that point.
Alexander Noren and Steve Webster were four shots further back in a share of 4th.
The leading Australasian was Michael Campbell who struggled to a final round of 74 but finished tied for 16th. Campbell began the final day in a share of second position so his final round was perhaps disappointing but considering where he has been with his game over the last three years or so his recent progress is quite remarkable.
Brett Rumford and Marcus Fraser tied for 22nd as the best of the Australians.
The European Tour now heads south to Dubai to complete its three event swing of the Middle East at the Dubai Desert Classic.
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