Sunday, September 5, 2010

Jimenez claims European Masters

Final leaderboard:
-21 MA Jimenez (Spa) -18 E Molinari (Ita) -16 M Manassero (Ita) -13 S-Y Noh (Kor) -12 R-J Derksen (Ned), C Schwartzel (SA), R Coles (Eng), O Wilson (Eng) Selected others: -11 P Lawrie (Ire), M Warren (Sco), S Webster (Eng) -9 C Wood (Eng), D Clarke (NI) -5 G Storm (Eng) -2 R McGowan (Eng)

Miguel Angel Jimenez
The win is Jimenez's third on this season's European Tour

Spain's Miguel Angel Jimenez held off the challenge of his Italian Ryder Cup team-mate Edoardo Molinari to win the European Masters by three strokes.

Leading by three shots overnight, Jimenez carded a 67, 21 under overall, dropping one shot on the par-five 14th.

An eagle on the 15th brought Molinari to within a shot of the lead but a bogey on the next halted his momentum.

Molinari's 67 left him 18 under while his 17-year-old compatriot Matteo Manassero (68) was third on 16 under.

As a result of his performance in the tournament - only his sixth as a professional - Manassero has become the youngest player to secure a playing card on the European Tour.

The performance's of Jimenez and Molinari is a boost for European Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie, who now has five players who have won events since the start of August at his disposal for the Celtic Manor showdown with the United States.


Ross Fisher won the Irish Open, Martin Kaymer was victorious in the USPGA Championship, Peter Hanson claimed the Czech Open and Molinari took last week's Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles.

At Crans-sur-Sierre in Switzerland, it could easily have been Molinari celebrating his second victory in successive events.

Six shots clear, with seven holes to play, Jimenez subsequently saw his lead slashed to one as Molinari birdied the 12th and 14th and then eagled the 516-yard 15th, thanks to a superb six iron to within two feet of the hole, as the Spaniard bogeyed the 14th.

A Jimenez birdie and Molinari bogey on the 16th re-established a gap between the two that the latter could not bridge.

"I made a good recovery at the 16th - that was probably the key to the day," claimed the Spaniard.

Jimenez, 46, becomes the eighth oldest winner in European Tour history and the first to record three victories this season. Incredibly, 11 of his 18 titles have come since he turned 40.

The victory is also his first in the European Masters in his 22nd successive attempt and continues the fine form that has seen him finish seventh, third and now first in his last three events.

"I love to come here. It's not only my two times second, it's the amount of times I have finished top 10 and been in contention, so it means a lot," he admitted.

England's Steve Webster, who began the day joint third with Manassero, fell back to a four-way tie for ninth with a 73, while his compatriots Robert Coles (68) and Oliver Wilson (69) were two of four players to share fifth on 12 under.

Potenshöjande medel -

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