Charl Schwartzel charges to victory in the Nanshan China Open at Nanshan International Golf Club.
Charl Schwartzel / Getty Images
The 2011 U.S. Masters Champion Charl calmly claimed the Nanshan China Open with a last round of -4 under par 68, for a tournament total of -9 under par.
Starting three strokes behind overnight leaders Darren Clarke and Liang Wen-chong, Charl said it was satisfying to win, and also had some good comments to make about Darren;
“It’s always very satisfying to win. I’ve played a lot of golf tournaments and done a lot of traveling in the past few months and it felt like I’ve been playing really good golf with no results, so it’s nice to have something finally go your way. I won the U.S. Masters from four shots behind and I won by two shots. I never thought I was out of it, for any second. It’s a matter of staying in there, hitting good golf shots and controlling your own destiny.”
“Darren has been one of my idols. I’ve always looked up to him and he has been fantastic to me. I regard him as one of the best wind players when conditions are bad, and he has taught me so many of those shots. I hope it didn’t work against him this week. Darren also hasn’t played very well this year, so it’s nice to see him compete this week. It’s never nice to lose, I know the feeling , but I know he can take a lot of positives from his performance this week.”
Darren was seeking his first victory since claiming his Major win at The Open Championship at Royal St George’s in 2011, he appeared to be cruising to victory until missing a three footer on the 13th. He rued the missed opportunity but still had a share of the lead on the 17th, until finding the thick fringe of a greenside bunker;
“It was horrible. It couldn’t have got any worse. I’m obviously disappointed with the day, it was another one of those days on the greens again where I couldn’t buy a putt from anywhere. Still, that’s golf and they’ve got a very good winner here, a fantastic winner, and that’s the way it is. It’s like that sometimes, unfortunately. “
Both Liang and Darren had the chance to force a playoff on the 18th, the pair saw their attempts come up short. Liang said it had been a difficult putt to make;
” I knew I had to a make a birdie on the last but it was a delicate putt. Still, the Nanshan China Masters is my Major, one of the most important wins in my career and a good platform for younger China players.”