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Week 37: Leishman wins BMW Championship

September 18, 2017


PGA TOUR – BMW CHAMPIONSHIP

Mark Leishman made back-to-back birdies late in the final round Sunday to put away the final challenge, then closed with a birdie for a four-under 67 to set the tournament record and win by five over Justin Rose and Rickie Fowler.

It was Leishman's second victory this year, and it sends him to East Lake as the No. 4 seed in the FedEx Cup, giving him a clear shot at the $10 million prize.

Leishman finished at 23-under 261, breaking the 72-hole tournament record that Tiger Woods set at Cog Hill in 2007.

The timing could not have been better for the 33-year-old Australian. In his last event two weeks ago, he lost a two-shot lead on the back nine at the TPC Boston and said that loss stung more than most.

"I had a few scars from a few weeks ago," Leishman said. "I was just really, really determined to not let that happen again. Got it done."

And it was never really close.

Rose is the only player who got within two shots of the lead, only for Leishman to answer with a 30-foot birdie putt on the 15th hole and a 10-footer for birdie on the 16th. Rose closed with a 65.

Fowler made a late run when he was too far back, and he needed one more birdie on the 18th to grab the No. 5 seed for the FedExCup finale next week at the TOUR Championship. He ripped driver off the fairway and over the stream to the back rough. It was a bold play that preceded a pair of meager efforts -- a chip that came up 25 feet short, and a birdie putt that didn't to the hole. He closed with a 67.

European Tour – KLM Open

Romain Wattel landed his first European Tour title after a dramatic finish at the KLM Open in Spijk.

The Frenchman, who had recorded 25 top-ten finishes in his previous 186 events without tasting victory, was in control for much of the final round but survived a late scare when he missed the green with his approach to the last.

He successfully got up and down for par and a closing 69, which gave him a 15 under total.

That was one ahead of fast-finishing Canadian Austin Connelly, with Kiradech Aphibarnrat – Wattel’s main challenger for much of the day - finding water with his second to the 18th and dropping to 12 under with the subsequent double bogey.

Wattel’s victory was all the more remarkable as he had not finished higher than 24th previously this season and came into the week down at 130th in the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex.

Challenge Tour – Irish Challenge hosted by Mount Wolseley Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort

Julien Guerrier clinched a second European Challenge Tour win of the season with a dominant six-shot victory at the Irish Challenge hosted by Mount Wolseley Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort just hours after compatriot Romain Wattel had sealed a maiden European Tour win at the KLM Open.

Wattel has significant Challenge Tour history of his own, having won on the tour in 2010 when still an amateur, and he is sure to be joined on the European Tour next year by Guerrier, who remains second on the Road to Oman but has cut Aaron Rai’s lead to around 19,000 points.

Guerrier had previously won on home soil at June’s Hauts de France Golf Open but rarely has he been more impressive than in Carlow, where his bogey-free five under par final round of 67 extended his run to 48 holes without dropping a shot.

Web.com Tour – Albertsons Boise Open presented by Kraft Nabisco

Chesson Hadley made a late back-nine charge Sunday with birdies on three of his last four holes to secure his second victory of the season at the Albertsons Boise Open presented by Kraft Nabisco, the second of four Web.com Tour Finals events. Hadley entered the day five shots back of the lead but posted the round of the day with a 6-under 65 to edge Ted Potter, Jr. and Jonathan Randolph by one shot with a 16-under 268 total for his fourth career Web.com Tour victory.

“I know I came out of nowhere. No cameras showed up on me until I was on 16,” Hadley said. “Obviously every win is such a great feeling. The course was not playing easy, and I just kind of hung in there. I didn’t think 16-under would have a chance, but I’m certainly not going to give the trophy back.”

The shot of the day that ultimately won him the trophy came at the par-3 17th, where the Raleigh, North Carolina native striped his approach to a couple feet for his third consecutive birdie.

“I’ve never had a hole-in-one ever. I stand up on every par-3 and I’m going at it. I’m sending it in there, and I’m trying to make an ace,” Hadley said. “That thing was drawing in there so pretty. She was beautiful, and it looked like it came close. It was probably a few inches on the other side of the hole. I was really nervous. I didn’t feel like I hit the ball as well as I have, but I just kind of golfed my ball well enough this week. That’s the reason I won, that birdie on 17.”

 

 





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