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Kaymer clinches maiden Tour title

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — Rookie of the year Martin Kaymer held his nerve during Sunday’s final round at the Abu Dhabi Golf Championship to claim a maiden European Tour title with a four-stroke victory over Briton Lee Westwood and Sweden’s Henrik Stenson.

The 23-year-old from Germany began the day with a six-stroke lead over Anthony Wall and carded a final two-over-par 74 as Westwood and Stenson fell short of overhauling the overnight leader.

Sunday’s win took Kaymer, the youngest German winner of a European Tour event, into 35th place in the world rankings.

This is an unbelievable feeling. The back nine was tough especially with players like Stenson and Westwood chasing me, he said

I was struggling a bit on the front nine but I just tried to stick to my game plan and hit fairways and greens.

For those guys to catch me they had to make birdies and I really tried to stay patient and just try to make pars. It is not always an easy thing to do but I was very proud of the way I handled myself and I am thrilled the way today worked out.

Stenson admitted that he had too much to do after starting the day seven shots off the lead.

I have been struggling with my tee ball all week long and it was no different today. I didn’t hit enough fairways, he said.

Because of that I haven’t been able to hit my driver enough and I didn’t feel comfortable on the tee. I think that made the difference. If I had a strong driver in the bag I felt like I could have given him a run for his money.

Dubai Desert Classic champion Stenson claimed a tie for second with a final-round 71, while Westwood fired a battling 70 which included a bogey at the last.

Westwood, who had backed himself to catch Kaymer following his third-round, seven-under-par 65, had a chance to move within one with five holes to play but agonisingly missed a 10-foot downhill putt.

He also missed a 20-foot birdie chance at the 16th before hitting his second shot at the next over the back of the green and having to scramble for a par four.

Westwood’s dropped shot at the last handed Kaymer a three-stroke cushion heading down the 18th and he made no mistake to collect the $333,000 first prize with a birdie four — only his second of the final round.

England’s Richard Finch, Spain’s Ignacio Garrido and Sweden’s Peter Hedblom finished tied for third at 10 under par.

Scot Colin Montgomerie was 23rd on a five-under 283, missing out on his targeted top-10 finish to break back into the world’s top 50 in order to be able to compete at April’s Masters. E-mail to a friend

Kaymer clinches maiden Tour title – found here.

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January 20, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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