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International Golf News July 2012

Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Tiger Woods equaled Jack Nicklaus with a total of 73 US PGA Tour wins at the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance where a closing 67 gave him a two stroke victory over Andres Romero and South African Rory Sabbatini. Woods closed his round with three birdies in the final four holes including a spectacular flop shot hole out from the back of the 3 par 16th hole. Having won Arnold Palmer's tournament at Bay Hill, Woods adds the Jack Nicklaus hosted Memorial Tournament for his second win of 2012. The win took him to World Nº 4, his best World Ranking since the 20th of February 2011. Jack Nicklaus with a total of 73 US PGA Tour wins at the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance where a closing 67 gave him a two stroke victory over Andres Romero and South African Rory Sabbatini. Woods closed his round with three birdies in the final four holes including a spectacular flop shot hole out from the back of the 3 par 16th hole. Having won Arnold Palmer's tournament at Bay Hill, Woods adds the Jack Nicklaus hosted Memorial Tournament for his second win of 2012. The win took him to World Nº 4, his best World Ranking since the 20th of February 2011.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Rickie Fowler claimed his maiden PGA Tour title as he won the Wells Fargo Championship in a play-off against DA Points and Rory McIlroy, the latter returning to his position at the top of the Official World Golf Ranking. The three players finished on 14 under par for the tournament, one stroke ahead of Webb Simpson, and went into a sudden death play-off at the 18th. 23-year-old Fowler hit a 51-degree wedge to 4 feet, holed the putt for a victory and a win which took him to 24th in the World Rankings and with a jump of 15 places. Francesco Molinari won the Reale Seguros Open de Espana by 3 strokes and moves to World number 29 and moved up 17 places. Other winners were Hudson Swafford at the Stadion Classic at UGA on the Nationwide Tour.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Hunter Mahan headed into the week's Masters Tournament as the highest-ranked American after he claimed a single-stroke victory at the Shell Houston Open. Mahan parred the difficult 18th to deny Sweden's Carl Pettersson who just missed a birdie on the same hole. Mahan's success moved him to the top of the FedEx Cup standings and the 29-year-old moved up to fourth in the Official World Golf Ranking with a jump of 10 places. Thorbjorn Olesen braved a final round nerves and a Sunday charge from England’s Chris Wood to claim his maiden European Tour title at the Sicilian Open. Heading into the final round three shots clear of the chasing pack, the 22 year old Dane shot a final round of 69 to finish 15 under par for the tournament. This proved to be enough for a one shot victory an the end, but earlier in the round Wood was going low and threatening to claim a maiden title of his own. However, a bogey at the penultimate hole saw him eventually sign for an eight under par 64 and a second place finish. The win saw Olesen climb to a career high on the Ranking and take the final place in the game's Top 100 in the Ranking. The Australia Scott Hend described his week in Singapore as one of the most amazing in his life after he closed with a six-under-par 64 to win the weather-shortened ISPS Handa Singapore Classic. The Asian Tour event was reduced to 54 holes after inclement weather caused almost 10 hours of play to be lost over the first three days. Hend climbed 160 places to 254th. Luke Sweden's Carl Pettersson won the RBC Heritage in South Carolina by a convincing five shots finishing with a two under par 69 to end the tournament at Harbour Town on 14 under par. Zach Johnson finished second after a 70 with Colt Knost a shot further back in third on eight under par after a disappointing 74. Petterson jumps comfortably back into the World Top 50 with a 33 position, an improvement to 35th. Luke Donald, who needed to finish Top 8 to prevent Rory McIlroy passing him and becoming World Number One, finished in tied 37th place. McIlroy begins a second spell at the top and a third week in total as the World Number One. Despite having to play 32 holes on the Sunday, and closing with a final round 74, Lee Westwood successfully defended the title he won a year ago at the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters. After opening with a 65 on the Thursday, it was seemingly business as usual for the World Number Three who carried on just where he left off 12 months earlier to ab early lead. More solid play followed with the kind that has typified Westwood's' form over the past few years. Entering the final round with a healthy margin he was able to hang tough on a tiring day to take the title by two strokes from Thaworn Wiratchant. The win solidifies Westwood's' third place in the World Rankings as he chases down the table topping Rory McIlroy and second placed Luke Donald. Hiroyuki Fujita won the Tsuruya Open for the second time in three years to claim his 12th win on the Japan Golf Tour thanks to a closing 67 that saw him romp four clear of the chasing pack. Starting the day three back of overnight leader Han Lee, who fired a third round 63 to top the board, Fujita remained un-phased making the birdies he needed to on the Sunday to overturn the deficit and take the title. As a result he moved up 15 places in the World Ranking to 72nd. Chris Swanepoel fired a truly spectacular round on the Sunday at the Golden Pilsner Zimbabwe Open making only four pars en route to a 64 and playoff victory over Trevor Fisher Jnr. Opening the round with four straight birdies was just the start Swanepoel needed before bouncing back from a double bogey at the ninth with birdies either side of an eagle at the 12th. However, when a second double followed at 15 it looked to have derailed the Pretoria native's charge for the title. But birdies at 16 and 18 was a show of resilience and when Fisher failed to par the last it was a playoff. Pars followed first time round, but on the second extra hole a second par was enough for Swanepoel to win, and as a result a jump of 172 places to 457th. Jason Dufner won his first PGA Tour title by beating Ernie Els at the second extra hole of a play-off for the Zurich Classic of New Orleans. The pair tied after 72 holes after the veteran South African had made up a three-shot deficit on Dufner, the overnight leader with a round of 67. The first extra hole was halved in par but second time around Dufner rolled his long eagle putt up to the side of the hole with Els just off the green in three after finding sand off the tee. After Els missed his birdie try Dufner tapped in for his first victory after three runner-up finishes. The win took Dufner up 10 places to 20th and Els moved back into the World Top 50 for the first time in 6 months by up 23 places to 40th position.

Golfers in the News July 2012

Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Jordan Spieth - (USA) The Masters Augusta - Georgia - USA - 9th to 12th April 2015 The 21 year old showed sensational golfing ability in a sensational four rounds and wining The Masters with a 18 strokes below par. His nearest rivals was the USA Phil Mickelson and Englishman Justin Rose, both lying four shots behind. At one time Spieth reached 19 shots below but ended on 18. He broke the record number of birdies ever scored in any important tournament (28), and his opening round of 64 strokes was the lowest in The Masters history. This was his fifth win since turning professional and he moved to 2nd place in the World Ranking.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Kiradech Aphilbarnrat - (Thailand) Shenzhen International Genzon - Shenzen - China - 16th to 19th April, 2015 This became to second win on the European Tour for Kiradech Aphilbarnrat from Thailand in 61 attempts. It ended in a tight play-off against Li Hao-tong from China with Tommy Fleetwood from England only one stroke behind the leaders. This win moved Aphilbarnrat into 78th place in the World Rankings and 6th in the Race to Dubai.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Ashun Wu - (China) Volvo China Open Shanghai - China - 23rd to 26th April, 2015 The 29 year old Ashun Wu became the first Chinese golfer to win on the Tour on home soil - this was after 26 Tour events. He beat England's David Howell by one stroke with a threesome of Emiliano Grillo, Prom Measavat and Alexander Levy just one stroke behind.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Lee Westwood - (England) Nordea Masters Bro Hof Slott - Stockholm - Sweden - 6th to 9th June, 2012 Lee Westwood won his third Nordea Masters title in resounding fashion with a five shot triumph at Bro Hof Slott bringing his total of European Tour wins to 23. The World Nº 3 played beautifully from tee to green all week and could even afford to miss five putts from inside six feet over the first ten holes of his closing 69. Ross Fisher finished in second place, recovering brilliantly with a hat trick of birdies from the 15th and having double bogeyed the 13th. Westwood retained his World Ranking of 23rd position and 19th in the Race to Dubai.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Webb Simpson - (USA) US Open Championship Olympic - San Francisco - California - USA - 14th to 17th June, 2012 Webb Simpson was at an all-time high on the Ranking from 48 position after his Major title at the US Open Championship. Lying six shots back at the half way stage, the man who came so close to both the FedEx Cup and Money List titles on the PGA Tour in 2011, put together a superb weekend with a pair of 68s proving enough to give the North Carolina man the title at Olympic. Finishing an hour or so ahead of the final group and having posted a score of one over par, Simpson then had to wait as his challengers tried to match or beat his mark. When Furyk and McDowell failed to birdie the last it meant Webb was the winner.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Darren Fichardt - (South Africa) Saint-Omer Open Aa St Omer - France - 14th to 17th June, 2012 Darren Fichardt picked up his first win on The European Tour in some nine years after braving a weekend of high winds to win by two at the Saint-Omer Open. Starting the day five clear of second place, the 2003 Qatar Masters champion battled to a two over par round of 73, and with the inclement conditions and his healthy advantage starting the day, Fichardt managed to hang on and as a result jumped 128 places to 197th and 109th in the Race to Dubai.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Danny Willett - BMW International Open Golf Club Gut Larchenhof - Cologne - Germany - 21st to 24th June, 2012 Danny Willett added his own maiden success in Cologne at the BMW International Open after defeating Marcus Fraser in a titanic four hole play-off. The young Englishman started the day one shot clear of the chasing pack, but with a one over par round of 73 it allowed Australia's Fraser to catch the young man from Sheffield. Three holes of sudden death failed to separate them. When Willett piled the pressure on with a superb pitch at 18 to secure his par, Fraser faltered from across the green to miss from five feet and hand Willett the BMW glory. The win acts as proof of the promise that Willett emerged out on European Tour with four or five years ago, and saw him climb back to 115th in the World Ranking.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Jamie Donaldson - (Wales) Irish Open Royal Portrush - Portrush - County Antrim - Northern Ireland - 28th to 1st July, 2014 Jamie Donaldson who has just won the Irish Open at the Royal Portrush achieved his third victory on the European Tour in 319 attempts. He previously finished a career-best 38th in the 2011 Race to Dubai thanks to seven top ten finishes, including tied third in the Omega European Masters. He also made his debut in the Vivendi Seve Trophy in September, helping Great Britain and Ireland to victory over Continental Europe. This victory moved him to 33rd place in the World Rankings and 46th position in the Race to Dubai.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Lee Westwood - (England) Nordea Masters Bro Hof Slott - Stockholm - Sweden - 6th to 9th June, 2012 With his victory in Stockholm the Englishman Lee Westwood brought his European Tour wins to a total of 23 with 450 attempts. He also moved to 23rd position int the World Rankings and 19th in the Race to Dubai.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Webb Simpson - (USA) US Open Championship Olympic Club - San Francisco - California - USA - 14th to 17th June, 2012 This was Webb Simpson first win on the European Tour having played in only 18 tournaments. He moved to the 48th position in the World Rankings.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Darren Fitchardt - (South Africa) Saint-Omer Open Aa St Omer - St Omer - France - 14th to 17th June, 2012 This win gave Darren Fitchardt his fourth victory in 288 participations in the European Tour events. He moved to 197 in the World Rankings and 109 in the Race to Dubai.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Danny Willett - (England) BMW International Open Golf Club Gut Larchenhof - Cologne - Germany - 21st to 24th June, 2012 This was the second win for Danny Willett on the European Tour in 175 events. Danny moved to 38th position in the World Rankings and 2nd place in the Race to Dubai.
Sun, 1st Jul 2012
Jamie Donaldson - (England) The Irish Open Royal Portrush - Portrush - County Antrim - Northern Ireland - 28th to 1st July, 2012 This was the third win for England's' Jamie Donaldson on the European Tour in 319 participations. He moved to 33rd position in the World Rankings and 46th place in the Race to Dubai.

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