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Golf Today > Tour Schedules > 2008 > European Tour > Castello Masters > Round 4
 

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Sergio Garcia clinches three shot victory

Spain’s Sergio Garcia held off a charging Peter Hedblom of Sweden to win the Castello Masters title on Sunday, his first European Tour success for three years.

Tournament host Garcia’s closing four-under 67 for a 20-under 264 four-round aggregate left him three shots ahead of Hedblom (66) and hauled the 28-year-old Spaniard to number three in the world rankings.

Holding a four-stroke overnight lead and opening with a birdie, Garcia saw his advantage whittled down to one when Hedblom picked up shots at the first four holes.

When a nervous-looking Garcia, watched by relations, friends and neighbours at the Castellon course where he learned the game, bogeyed the short sixth, he was caught by Hedblom.

However, two immediate birdies to follow the blemish steadied the ship for Garcia, who went on to complete his first European Tour victory since the September 2005 European Masters, this one worth 446,00 dollars.

It ended a run of seven second places since his win three years ago in Switzerland.

His seventh European Tour success moved Garcia up two places on the world rankings, leap-frogging Vijay Singh and Padraig Harrington who drop to fourth and fifth place respectively.

Victory on his home course was particularly sweet for the local favourite, who dedicated his win to his mentor Severiano Ballesteros, who is recovering from a third operation on a brain tumour at La Paz Hospital.

“This win is for Seve and for all his family,” Garcia told reporters. “I hope this helps him to get a little better.

“It feels awesome to win here and we are looking forward to years of coming back.

“Peter played amazingly and it was good to make the putt on the seventh to get it back. Then I felt I was in control on the back nine.”

Although he has won twice, Hedblom’s 300,000-dollar prize is his biggest and ended any doubts as to whether he would be in next week’s season-ending Volvo Masters.

The Swede marred his day by bogeying the 17th but proved to be Garcia’s only real threat as he finished two shots ahead of fellow countryman Alex Noren (65).

Britons Simon Dyson (69) and David Lynn (69) assured themselves of places in the Volvo Masters by finishing a further stroke back on 14 under with Dane Soren Kjeldsen (69).

Francois Delamontagne retained his playing card by just 333 euro after finishing with a roller-coaster 74 to be four under in 47th place in the final event that counts.

The Frenchman was that amount above Swede Patrik Sjoland, who missed the cut, and moved into the 118th and final qualifying spot for 2009 cards on the order of merit.

“It was a terrible day for me,” Delamontagne told reporters. “I wanted to get maximum effort from myself but I was just terrible. I had four top-10s this year and should never have been worrying about tour school.”

 

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