Madeira Islands Open. Play-Off Win for Brooks Daniels.

dragon logo darkBrooks Daniels wins the Madeira Islands Open in a play-off against Scott Henry.

Daniel Brooks  (Getty Images)

Brooks Daniels / Getty Images

Brooks carded a -5 under par second and final round in the Madeira Islands Open to reach -9 under par for the 36 hole tournament. Scott scored a -4 under par final round, leaving him tied at the top of the leaderboard at -9 under par. He then bogeyed the first play-off hole handing the win to Brooks who carded a par on the 18th to win his maiden Tour title.

This short tournament was further saddened by the death of  caddie Iain McGregor, Brooks referred to the incident;

“It’s great to get a win, but it’s not nice to do it in these circumstances, it’s horrible what happened out there so my condolences go out to all of his family.”

 

“I’m over the moon to have won on The European Tour but I played good golf for the last few days so I’m happy with that. Scott did really well in the last three holes and it was a great performance from him. I was pretty calm during the play-off, more tired than anything, but I was a little bit nervous obviously.”

 

“Anything can happen in a play-off so to hit the fairway from the tee was nice and then to hit a good shot in and put him under a bit of pressure was great. It’s why we play golf, to win, so I’m really happy.”

Scottsaid it only took one good putt to get him fired up at the end;

” Obviously I was not looking like catching up with Daniel towards the end, but then I holed probably the best putt I’ve holed all week at the 15th hole and that got me going. The last three holes I holed some really good putts so it was good just to force a play-off.

“I’m obviously disappointed to be beaten in a play-off but everything that’s happened, it puts things into perspective a little.”

Fabrizio Zanotti, Julien Guerrier, Jordi Garcia Pinto and Antonio Hortal shared third place on -6 under par for this sad tournament



 

 

Madeira Islands Open. Tournament Reduced to 36 Holes.

dragon logo dark

The Madeira Islands Open in Portugal has been reduced to 36 holes due to inclement weather conditions.

Round one has yet to be completed, and Scott Henry still leads in the clubhouse at -5 under par 67. There are three players at -4 under par; Daniel Brooks and Lloyd Kennedy have finished their opening rounds of -4 under par 68. Antonio Hortal has completed 16 holes and is also at -4 under par.

Round one will resume tomorrow, with a further 18 holes to follow to complete the tournament.

Lloyd Kennedy  (Getty Images)

Lloyd Kennedy / Getty Images

Lloyd Kennedy was ecstatic with his bogey free first round -4 under par score;

“I’m over the moon with four under, it’s quite tough out there. It’s very windy and it’s been a long day, I was up at 5:15 am this morning and had five warm ups during the day. Hopefully I can do more of the same in the second round. I didn’t drop a shot for my whole first round which was nice. I haven’t done that for a while.”

“I have never played an event like this. This is definitely a first for me. I got to the golf club here on Monday morning at 11am and I had played seven holes by 2pm on the Saturday afternoon, so it’s been a long week. But it’s the same for everyone. No one can do anything about the weather so you just have to take it as it comes.”

“It’s a mental test, absolutely. I was on the tee, then back into the clubhouse and back and forth a couple of times. It’s tough but you’ve got to have your wits about you and if you can get your head around it there are big opportunities there. It’s such a big week for the Challenge Tour players this week, if you have a good week it’s a big step towards getting a European Tour card at the end of the season. Hopefully more of the same tomorrow and we’ll see where that takes me.”


Daniel Brooks was also very happy with his effort;

“I’m really happy with that round, I made a few nice birdie putts at the start and then hit a couple of lovely shots coming in at the end for a couple of birdies.”

“It’s alright once you get out there on the course because you’re out there competing and it doesn’t matter what time of the day it is, you’re out there to do your job either way. Hopefully I can carry on the way I’m going.”

The final outcome of this tournament is still in the balance with just one round to go. A low score tomorrow will be enough to lift the trophy, and just about anyone could win it.

Madeira Islands Open. Scott Henry Leads Fog Affected Tournament

dragon logo dark

 

Scott Henry leads the fog affected Madeira Islands Open in Portugal.Scott Henry  (Getty Images)

Scott Henry / Getty Images

Scott carded a -5 under par 65 first round before the fog returned and play was abandoned for the day. The unpredictable weather and heavy fog is playing havoc with the beginning of The European Tour’s 1,500th official event at Clube de Golf do Santo da Serra.

Play started at 7:45am on Friday morning, but only briefly as more fog moved in causing another suspension at 9:00am. Round One eventually resumed at 12:45pm, giving Scott enough time to finish his round before play was suspended due to darkness.

Scott was happy to be in the club house lead, but knows there is still a long way to go yet in the tournament;

“It was certainly tough yesterday, I was in the clubhouse for ten hours, from 7:00am, so it was long. I drank a lot of coffee and ate a lot of Madeira cake, that was about it. I think the cake kept me going today”

“I got off to a fast start which was nice, recently, in the few tournaments I’ve played, I haven’t done that so it was nice to start well. It was a tough day and I would have taken five under before I went out. It was strange,  because it was so tough I didn’t expect to get to seven under like I did. I had a couple of tough holes to finish with and two bogeys in the last two was a bit frustrating.”

“I’m really pleased though, I played well and I’m in the hunt for tomorrow. Hopefully we can get 36 more holes done. That’s going to be the biggest challenge. I’m quite happy just to be in the hunt. I feel like I’m playing good again so whatever happens tomorrow I’m looking forward to it. It would be amazing to win but we have a long way to go.”

Tied in third place are Andrew Marshall, Pedro Oriol and former European Tour winner Martin Weigele, all with completed rounds of -3 under par.

Martin was also happy to have completed his round, and is delighted with the way he is playing after an enforced long lay-off recovering from hip surgery;

“I was very pleased with my day because the conditions were really tough, it was actually one of the best rounds I’ve ever managed to play in the wind. I hope that my practise since winter and my fitness work has paid off and I will try to carry on in this good form.”

“It was probably as windy as in Lumine on the Challenge Tour a few weeks ago, where we had to stop playing because the balls were moving on the greens, but they are slower here and more sheltered.”

“It was a really bad year for me last year but after having hip surgery almost two years ago I had to stop playing eight months and they say that if you stop playing for a long time, you need three times the amount of time to recover so if I can get back the way I was in 2011 already it would be awesome.”

Madeira Islands Open. First Round Fogged Off

dragon logo dark

 

Fogged off, play has been abandoned in the first round of the Madeira Islands Open at the Clube de Golf do Santo da Serra, in Portugal.
Play abandoned in Madeira due to fog

Photo / Getty Images

This statement was issued by José Maria Zamora, The European Tour’s Tournament Director;

We have abandoned play today because five of the holes have been unplayable all day due to the fog. Basically, 13 holes of the holes have been playable for much of the day but five of the holes higher up the mountain, one, nine, ten, 11 and 18, have had no visibility all day.”

“The decision to call it at 5:00pm was taken because the players have been sitting in the clubhouse for more than ten hours and it looked like it the fog was going to remain for the rest of the day. There is a point where the guys get tired so it’s best that they get back to their hotels and start afresh tomorrow.”

Guy Nestor, The European Tour’s official on-site meteorologist expected the fog to lift by noon;

“We expected today’s fog to hang around until around noon, but for it to last this long into the afternoon was a little unexpected. But as the day went on there was a bit of an inversion plus some more cloud cover coming in from the north east, so there were a lot of variables that caused the issue here today.”

“It can be tricky forecasting up here at the top of this mountain in Madeira but we’ve come here in the past and anytime you get a north-easterly wind and high pressure to the north west, which is what we got, it allows for some colder air to move in higher up, while it warms up at the bottom. That’s how you get the fog up here.”

“Tomorrow morning, I do expect some fog in the morning but the one thing that will help tomorrow is that I do see some clearing of cloud cover, so that should allow for the sun to move through and heat the surface up and that will hopefully lift any fog.”

“Saturday and Sunday I expect more sunshine. Some clouds will come through at times but I expect it to be very different to what we had today.”

Lets all hope that things get going tomorrow.


European Tour. American Peter Uihlein Wins First Tour Event.

American Peter Uihlein won the European Tour, Madeira Islands Open, his first career win on the Tour.

Peter Uihlein  (Getty Images)

Peter Uihlein with his first Trophy/ Getty Images

Peter’s nerveless last round of -4 under par, 68 and tournament total of -15 under par earned him a two-shot victory at Clube de Golf do Santo da Serra, in Portugal. He said he was thrilled and delighted with the victory;

” I’m just thrilled, to do it playing well on the back nine, coming down the stretch, is sweet. I know Morten played a heck of a round and Mark played really well so it was nice to come out on top. I just knuckled down I guess. It was all putting that did it today, I was just trying to free up and they started to roll in so it was nice. I hit some good putts coming down the stretch. When I was at the 17th I saw Morten was on 15 under and I thought it might have been a little more difficult but when I got to the 18th green I obviously saw he had dropped back. I’m just delighted to have won.”

This win confirmed to Peter that he had made the right choice in starting his professional career on the Challenge Tour and European Tour, on the advice of his father.

A year ago I wasn’t even thinking about playing, I was just really struggling, it’s a funny game. But I’ve learned a lot over the last year. When you’re struggling, it’s one of those things, you hate it when it happens but it’s almost the best thing that could happen to you. It definitely was for me and I’m pretty happy with how things turned out. You grow up quick out here and that was the main reason I came over. It’s been a good process so far and hopefully I can keep going.”

Tied in second place were  Morten Ørum Madsen and Mark Tullo, at -13 under par for the tournament.

Mark reported that it had been a positive week.

” It was a very positive week, I could have won this tournament. I had three bogeys from 100 yards today which hurt a lot, but hats off to Peter. He played really well on the back nine and that’s what you need to do to win tournaments. I didn’t do that but it was very close and that’s a positive. Maybe there’s something further along the road for me in a big tournament.”

Morten Ørum carded an impressive -5 under par, 67 to finish tied second alongside Mark, both on 13 under par. Unfortunately for Morten his score included a six, on the last hole.

As Peter Uihlein said, it is the putting that makes the difference, that’s what I keep telling everyone, so if you are struggling with your putter you should consider using a White Dragon Putter.

 

Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, at the Half Way Stage

Sergio Garcia   (Getty Images)

Sergio Garcia/Getty Images

Sergio Garcia is one of four players tied at the top of the leaderboard at the half way stage of the Commercial Bank, Qatar Masters tournament at the Doha Golf Course in Qatar. attaining a -9 under par total score for the tournament.  Joining Sergio at the summit are Ricardo Santos of Portugal, German Martin Kaymer and Marcus Fraser from Australia.

Of course Sergio and Martin are Ryder Cup Team-mates, who were part of the European Ryder Cup winning team in 2012 at  Medinah Country Club, Chicago U.S.A.

Sergio was happy with his first round of golf for this season, after his corrective eye-surgery;

“It was nice, I definitely felt I played a little bit better than yesterday. Obviously I would have loved to hit a couple of shots better, but I gave myself a lot of chances and I can’t be disappointed. The wind started picking up a bit and it made it tough enough to choose the right clubs. We tried to play smart and managed to do that fairly nicely.”

First round leader Ricardo  followed up his first round -7 under par 65 with a second round of -2 under par of 70 for his -9 under par total score. He made a fine up and down from the bunker at the par five last, while Marcus Fraser did the same on the long ninth to complete his 67. Marcus said he was a little scrappy down the last hole today;

” It was a little bit scrappy down the last hole but I managed to scramble a par. Overall I felt like I played pretty steadily most of the day. I made a few birdies once I got on to the back nine, which was the front nine, but I’m pretty happy with the day. It is definitely one of those courses where you need to be patient and just take your chances where you can get them.”

Ricardo Santos, the Madeira Islands Open winner was pleased with his efforts of the first two days,

I struck the ball very well today, I just missed a few shots but I’m still happy with the round. This afternoon the wind is a little bit stronger than the morning, so I’m happy with two under. It’s never easy, but I started really well, after four holes I was three under, so I told myself to just keep playing like that. I just want to play my game the best I can, and then we’ll see. I want to enjoy the weekend.”

World number four Justin Rose was penalised a shot on the opening day when his ball moved as he prepared to tap in on the 17th, but he still made his first cut in five visits to Doha, Justin joked;

“That’s almost like leading the tournament round here.”

Two rounds to go, I wonder if Justin is close enough to make an impact here at Doha,  if he does it would be for the first time.

UBS Hong Kong Open. Maical Miguel Makes it Three

Magical Miguel Angel Jiménez makes it three wins at this event, the UBS Hong Kong Open, and he also became the oldest winner on the European Tour in history. Miguel’s tournament winning score was -15 under par, with a last round of -5 under par 65, to lift the trophy.

Miguel Angel Jimenez  (Getty Images)

Miguel Angel Jiménez/ Getty Images

Miguel is six months older than Des Smyth was when he won the 2001 Madeira Islands Open, the victory was Miguel’s 19th on The European Tour and the 12th win since he turned 40, with two of which also came in Fanling in 2005 and 2008. Miguel, the  assistant Captain at The Ryder Cup at Medinah, said he hoped it was not his last victory;

It’s very nice , I hope it’s not the last one, I really love this place. I love the golf course, it’s a great golf course where you have to control the ball very well, it’s not a matter of distance.”

Of his longevity playing golf Miguel admitted;

“This is maybe the olive oil in my joints, and the nice Rioja wine and those things keep you fit and flexible. The most important thing, I do what I like to do in my life, and golf has given me all of this pleasure. Winning now, at 48.  My goodness 24 years I’ve been on the Tour. I still love it and I think that is fantastic, to love what you’re doing, and enjoy yourself, keep fit, keep working myself a little bit and stretching a lot, and that’s the main thing to do to compete with the new guns. “

Fredrik Andersson Hed , another veteran player, at 40, made a charge and could have got up to make it a play-off, but just came up short, claiming second place on his own at -14 under par, he rued a couple of missed birdies on the back nine that would have made the difference;

“I don’t think I’ve ever played better than I did today under pressure. There were a couple of loose shots on 15 and 16 that I got away with and made pars and then unfortunately couldn’t get the birdies in on 17 and 18. It always feels good to finish second in a golf tournament; you know you’ve done something good. It’s a pity I couldn’t get one of the putts on the last two holes to put a little bit more pressure on him on the last hole. He did fantastic, though, with a perfect tee shot, the perfect second shot and easy two-putt, so all credit to Miguel.”

Marcus Fraser was third at -12 under par, and tied for fourth was Peter Lawrie, who  sealed his place next week  at the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai in the process, Scot Stephen Gallacher and the first of the young guns, 19-year-old Italian Matteo Manassero, last week’s Barclays Singapore Open champion, they finished at -11 under par.

The re-emerging Kiwi Michael Campbell, joint overnight leader with Miguel, and playing in the last pairing, fell away to joint eighth, with a sad last round of +2 over par.