shadow

Oliver Wilson produced a gutsy final round display to finally claim a maiden European Tour title and reignite his career at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

The 34 year old Englishman represented Europe at The 2008 Ryder Cup and was a nine-time runner-up on The European Tour between 2006 and 2009, reaching the top 50 on The Official World Golf Ranking in the process.

But a dramatic loss of form saw him lose his card at the end of 2012, and he started the week outside the top 100 on the Challenge Tour and 792nd in the world.

Returning to The Old Course for the final round, the tournament invite was swiftly caught by Louis Oosthuizen when he three-putted the fourth for bogey.

He had to wait until the tenth for his first birdie of the day, by which time Scotland’s Richie Ramsay, England’s Tommy Fleetwood and World Number One Rory McIlroy were all battling for the title.

A second birdie from ten feet at the 11th kept Wilson in the thick of the action, and when long-time leader Ramsay bogeyed the 16th and 17th, he was able to take advantage. A brilliant approach to the 16th from 220 yards yielded a tap-in birdie that gave him the lead back, and after making a mess of the 17th he produced a superb pitch to salvage par.

A missed birdie putt at the last gave Fleetwood a chance to force a play-off, but when he missed from six feet Wilson was a champion at last with a closing 70 and 17 under total, earning €625,787 in the process.

Key player quotes:

Oliver Wilson: “I don’t have words for it. It’s been ten years, 11 years coming. There were nine runners-up and I hadn’t done a whole lot to lose those, but nothing had really gone my way and this week, to be given a big opportunity by Dunhill to play – I can’t thank them enough to give me an opportunity to do this – I guess it’s what golf’s all about.

“Before I went out today I thought about how I’ve never gone out and won a tournament. I’ve played alright coming down the stretch and not lost it and other guys have just got over the line ahead of me and today I was just trying to be patient.

“I got off to a good start ball-striking wise but a couple of three-putts and you think ‘here we go’ but I stayed patient. The course was tricky with the wind, Rory was in front and I could keep an eye on what he was doing and Tommy was playing good as well.

“I played some great shots on the back nine, you feel like when you turn back into the wind that your opportunity has probably gone because it’s hard to make some birdies.

”I made a great save at 14 and the shot I hit into 16 was probably the best shot of my life. 17 was hard work and at the last Tommy had putted well and I thought he was going to make that.

“When I came into the week I was almost just trying to make the cut! I got going and played good in practice and knew I was capable of putting a good tournament together but you’re never sure if it’s going to happen.

“I could be drunk for a while – I’ve had a lot of champagne on ice over the years!”

Tommy Fleetwood: “I was just that little bit short which is always disappointing but I think you always have to put it in perspective that you’ve just come second in a huge event.

“From where I was starting Saturday morning, it’s an amazing finish and I think I holed my fair share of putts over the last few days. That one at the last wasn’t a very good putt and that’s just what happens.

“Fair play to Ollie though, that up and down he made at 17 deserved a win so I’m delighted for him.”

Rory McIlroy: “It’s easy to accept these things when you have two Majors in the bag, you know what I mean, same as the FedExCup, same as everything else that’s happened after the summer. It’s easy to accept these things when you have played so well and there are a couple of major trophies on your mantelpiece.

“I’m really happy with how I’m playing and that’s the big thing, and that’s what will see me through for hopefully a prolonged period of time. Even if you don’t get the wins, you know that you’re still playing well and you’re going to keep giving yourself chances.”

Golf Scores:

271 O Wilson (Eng) 64 72 65 70,
272 R Ramsay (Sco) 69 68 68 67, R McIlroy (Nir) 73 67 64 68, T Fleetwood (Eng) 69 73 62 68,
273 C Doak (Sco) 70 67 70 66,
274 R Sterne (RSA) 73 66 68 67, L Oosthuizen (RSA) 70 74 62 68, S Lowry (Irl) 66 70 71 67,
275 C Wood (Eng) 70 69 66 70, B Koepka (USA) 70 73 64 68,
276 M Foster (Eng) 68 72 70 66, R Derksen (Ned) 73 70 63 70, M Siem (Ger) 69 71 68 68,
277 R Karlsson (Swe) 72 68 68 69, B Wiesberger (Aut) 71 71 67 68, D Howell (Eng) 70 72 68 67, R Palmer (USA) 69 68 68 72,
278 T Pieters (Bel) 73 73 65 67, P Harrington (Irl) 66 70 71 71, P Uihlein (USA) 73 69 69 67, S Hansen (Den) 72 68 69 69, P Lawrie (Sco) 69 72 68 69, R Jacquelin (Fra) 65 70 69 74, R Green (Aus) 68 71 71 68,
279 M Warren (Sco) 73 70 68 68, D Fichardt (RSA) 73 72 65 69, R Bland (Eng) 71 71 70 67, B Grace (RSA) 76 65 69 69, G Coetzee (RSA) 71 67 68 73, J Parry (Eng) 68 73 68 70, A Levy (Fra) 68 68 68 75,
280 M Carlsson (Swe) 74 70 67 69, S Gallacher (Sco) 68 70 69 73, G Stal (Fra) 69 75 68 68, N Elvira (Esp) 71 72 68 69, J Kruger (RSA) 75 71 66 68, T Jaidee (Tha) 71 71 68 70, E Els (RSA) 71 74 65 70, P Larrazábal (Esp) 71 73 68 68, L Bjerregaard (Den) 74 68 70 68, M Hoey (Nir) 72 70 65 73,
281 P McGinley (Irl) 72 70 69 70, R Evans (Eng) 67 74 69 71, M Nixon (Eng) 70 70 70 71, B Stone (RSA) 72 67 70 72, E Grillo (Arg) 72 73 66 70, G Havret (Fra) 74 71 66 70, C Lee (Sco) 71 71 69 70, J McLeary (Sco) 67 72 70 72, G Bourdy (Fra) 67 71 71 72,
282 A Cañizares (Esp) 72 71 65 74, M Kieffer (Ger) 72 70 70 70, J Scrivener (Aus) 72 72 68 70, F Molinari (Ita) 74 70 68 70, P Casey (Eng) 69 73 66 74, A Sullivan (Eng) 70 71 71 70, O Fisher (Eng) 74 69 66 73,
283 R Gonzalez (Arg) 69 70 72 72, N Dougherty (Eng) 72 69 71 71, T Olesen (Den) 71 70 71 71,
284 G Storm (Eng) 68 72 70 74, R Fisher (Eng) 73 73 65 73, A Otaegui (Esp) 67 75 67 75, E Molinari (Ita) 73 68 70 73,
285 F Aguilar (Chi) 71 67 72 75,
286 T Aiken (RSA) 71 70 69 76, R Rock (Eng) 67 76 67 76, N Fasth (Swe) 72 71 69 74, A Saddier (Fra) 72 73 67 74, S Kapur (Ind) 70 72 70 74,
287 H Otto (RSA) 69 70 70 78,
291 G Porteous (Eng) 74 67 71 79,

Source: European Tour

Author

Graham J Gordon, The Editor and Owner, GolfblogspotUK

The GolfblogspotUK website is owned and run by former Walker Cup player and European Tour card holder, Graham J Gordon, from Scotland, the Home of Golf. The owner is a golf fanatic who had to retire early from competitive tour play due to a back injury that required surgery. Graham wishes to share his knowledge and own experiences of the game with the GolfblogspotUK community and to receive your feedback on all aspects of the sport. Graham has been playing the game for over 20 years and received a great deal of pleasure from the sport. He has met several friends and visited many different places around the world, thanks to playing the great game of golf. Time to put a little back into the game to help others.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>