DP World Tour Championship. Jon Rahm Wins. The Race to Dubai. Tommy Fleetwood Wins

White Dragon GolfRace to Dubai

Jon Rahm wins the DP World Tour Championship, while Tommy Fleetwood wins the year-long Race to Dubai, in a thrilling day at the Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai.

 DP World Tour ChampionshipRace to Dubai

Jon Rahm, Spain and Tommy Fleetwood, England / getty

Jon carded a final round -5 under par 67 to win the DP World Tour Championship, with a -19 under par total, and a one shot victory;

“It’s hard to sum it up, an incredible week, I could not be more proud of what I’ve done this week.”

“It could be very easy to just be content with getting the award and just being here and trying to play the best.”

Second place was shared between Shane Lowery, Ireland, -9 under 63 today and Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Thailand, -5 under 67 last round, both with -18 under totals.

Tommy Fleetwood won the Race to Dubai carding +2 over par 74 here, but the cushion he had built up was good enough to hold off Justin Rose, who finished in the tie for third place in the  DP World Tour Championship with -2 under 70 today and -17 under for the Championship, when at one point he was soaring, a triple bogey six at the par three 14th really was his undoing;

“I did hit the wall a bit today.” 

“My front nine was beautiful. I was playing great golf and I felt in complete control, but the bogey at twelve seemed to slow all the momentum.”

“From that point it was a bit of a grind.”

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DP World Tour Championship. Justin Rose In Pole Position.

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Justin Rose, England, is in pole position to win the Race to Dubai sitting on top of the DP World Tour Championship after 54 holes  at Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai.

 DP World Tour Championship

Justin Rose / getty

Rosey will take a one shot lead into the final round of the DP World Tour Championship following his third round -7 under par 65 to post a tournament total of -15 under par. It will be an exciting finish to the Race to Dubai on Sunday, with Tommy Fleetwood in the tie for third, just two shots back.

Justin summed it all up;

“I know what I need to do to stay at the top of the leaderboard.”

“But if I slip up tomorrow, he’s right there. He’s done everything he needs to do on his end, so it’s a lot of fun.”

“An opportunity, that’s the way I’m going to look at it. Don’t see much pressure on myself tomorrow. This is going to be a day just to go for it really and play well.”

“There’s going to be a lot of good players and it’s going to be a day where you have to play good golf.”

Tied in second place are Jon Rahm, Spain, also -7 under 65 today and Dylan Frittelli, South Africa, -9 under 63 in his third round, both players just one shot back at -14 under par, so the contest for the  DP World Tour Championship is also very tight.

In the tie for third place with -13 under totals are Tommy Fleetwood, England, -7 under 65 today, Dean Burmester, South Africa, -7 under 65, and Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Thailand, -5 under 67.

Tommy spoke about the year-long tournament;

“It’s the biggest thing I’ve ever tried to achieve. I was in contention in the US Open and Mexico but they were one or two rounds.”

“This has been all year and you come down to the final event.”

“A year-and-a-half ago I was absolutely nowhere in the game and I was a bit lost.”

“Fast forward to here for me, it’s been amazing to play and to enjoy my golf this year. Then to get to this stage, it’s been an absolute pleasure and privilege trying to compete for a Race to Dubai.”

The year-long Race to Dubai has come down to the last round of the last tournament, and only a handful of points between the top two contestants, it is exciting, it could come down to the last putt.

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DP World Tour Championship. Matt Fitzpatrick 36 Hole Leader.

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The defending Champion Matt Fitzpatrick leads the DP World Tour Championship after 36 holes at Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai.

 DP World Tour Championship

Matt Fitzpatrick / getty

Matt carded a second consecutive round -5 under 67 to lead the DP World Tour Championship at -10 under par, and will take a one shot advantage into the weekend;

“I did win last year and that probably gives me a little bit more confidence than everyone else. Maybe apart from Rosey because he’s won the last two starts.”

I’ve got nothing to lose, I’m not trying to win the Race to Dubai, unfortunately.”

“I’m just looking forward to the weekend and delighted that I could put myself in position.”

In second place, with the low round of the day, -9 under 63, is Tyrrell Hatton at that score.

Three players are then tied in third place at -8 under for the tournament, Suri Julian, USA, -4 under 68 today, Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Thailand, -5 under 67, and Justin Rose, England with a -2 under 70.

Justin would have been one shot better but dropped a shot with a three putt at the last hole;

“I was aware of the scores and who had done what today, it was an exciting day’s golf from a Race to Dubai point of view.”

“Halfway stage, I’d probably have signed up for that if somebody said on Wednesday you would be in this position after two rounds, I’d have taken it.”

“It’s a position you can build on at the weekend.”

“Today was a day I did leave a couple out there but in the course of 72 holes, there’s always a spell or round where you feel like you left a few out there.”

The current Race to Dubai leader Tommy Fleetwood had a better day carding -7 under par 65 to put himself back in contention for the title, he is now T 11 at -6 under;

“So the sole focus was to try to get back into this event today. I knew I needed a low one.”

“But I needed a low one today for sort of both purposes, maybe. The only thing that you can control is the tournament in a way.”

“Race to Dubai, I can’t do anything about the maths or what Justin does or anything.”

“There’s still a tournament to play for and there’s still a Race to Dubai to play for.”

“So there’s two things going on and you’ve just got to concentrate on one, which is kind of each day as it comes and try and do your best in the tournament.”

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DP World Tour Championship. Patrick Reed Leads.

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Patrick Reed, USA, leads the DP World Tour Championship after the first round at Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai.

DP World Tour Championship

Patrick Reed / getty

Patrick fired a first round -7 under par 65 to lead the DP World Tour Championship by just one shot;

“All I can hope for is just keep on playing some solid golf and put myself in position.”

“I felt like ball-striking was where it needed to be. I feel like I had pretty much most control over the golf ball today.”

“Seemed like the tee-shots I didn’t seem to hit particularly well, I missed them in the correct spots.”

Sharing second place that one shot back at -6 under par after opening rounds of 66 are the in form Justin Rose, England, and Scott Hend, Australia.

Justin is looking for his third consecutive win and is on track to win the coveted crown of Europe’s best in the Race to Dubai;

“There’s two things to think about this week: winning the golf tournament and winning the Race to Dubai.”

“I know that if I do one of those, the first one, then the second one happens.”

“I’ve just got to try and put together a really good final three rounds and do what I always do.”

“Really happy with that as a start. I wanted to come out today with good intent and get myself moving forward quickly.”

“Been fortunate enough to have won the last two events but been doing so from quite a long way behind and you can’t always rely on that.”

“I was definitely keen today to come out and try and get going as quick as I could this week and see where it goes from here.”

The current leader of the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex, Tommy Fleetwood, did not have such a good start, shooting +1 over par 73, he will need to improve dramatically if he wants to win the season long competition;

“If you look in terms of the tournament, I’ve got to shoot something really low tomorrow and Saturday.”

“Then it will depend on how he plays.”

“But there’s three rounds of golf, 54 holes is a lot of holes and anything can happen. It’s been similar to the last few weeks where I’ve not had great first rounds but climbed the leaderboard steadily.”

“Just go out tomorrow and do my best.”

“I wasn’t far off after a really bad start. I wasn’t really far off actually shooting a decent score today.”

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DP World Tour Championship. Matt Fitzpatrick Wins.

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Matt Fitzpatrick wins the DP World Tour Championship, while Henrik Stenson claims his second  Race to Dubai title.

 DP World Tour Championship

Matt Fitzpatrick / getty

Matt had a final round -5 under 67 to post a  DP World Tour Championship winning total of -17 under par, sinking a clutch birdie putt on the 18th, for a one shot victory;

“Four footers aren’t normally what you want for the win but to finish it off like that makes it a lot sweeter.”

“It means the world. To win one of these Final Series events is really special, and this one in particular, obviously the last tournament of the year.”

“For me to win on the final week of the year is special.”

“It’s been a long year for me, and I’ve got to admit, this is just icing on the cake as a year goes. It’s been a great one.”

Tyrrell Hatton was second at -16 under par, he too had birdied the last, but to no avail, his last round -4 under 68 just a bit short on the Jumeirah Golf Estates course;

“Obviously it’s a bitter pill to swallow, but it’s been a great week and for me it’s been the best year of my life. So I can’t get too downbeat, but these things happen.”

“You know, it is what it is and I’m happy with how the week went. I’m sure hopefully in the future, I’ll take my next chance.”

Charl Schwartzel shot -5 under 67 to finish in third place at -14 under par.

Race to Dubai

Henrik Stenson / getty

Henrik won the Race to Dubai title, for the second time, he cruised through the final round carding -7 under par 65, the same total as the defending champion Rory McIlroy, they both finished T9 in the competition.

Henrik spoke about his great year;

“I’m very pleased to get my name on this trophy once again.”

“It’s been a great year, the best year of my career. I’ve always thought it was going to be hard to top 2013, but I think I’ve done that this year.”

“Maybe not to the level of golf over six months, but certainly with the highlights of winning The Open, the Olympics and managed to win the Race to Dubai again.”

“So it’s been a great year and it feels lovely to finish in this way.”

DP World Tour Championship, Sergio & Francesco In Front.

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Sergio Garcia, from Spain and Francesco Molinari, Italy are in front at the half-way stage of the DP World Tour Championship at the Jumeirah Golf Estates, in Dubai.

 DP World Tour Championship

Sergio Garcia / getty

Sergio and Francesco both shot -5 under par 67 to lead the  DP World Tour Championship with -9 under totals.

Sergio had one bogey, and some iffy putts;

“I felt like I was swinging the club really, really well.”

“I was hitting a lot of good shots. I hit a couple of iffy putts here and there but I made some really good ones, also. I was very happy to see all of that.”

“I’m excited about it. It’s good to be out there with a chance the last tournament of the year. I just want to make sure that I keep playing the same way I’ve played these first two days and see where that takes us.”

 DP World Tour Championship

Francesco Molinari / getty

Francesco said he will repeat the same performance tomorrow;

“Just keep doing the same and hopefully I’ll get a similar result tomorrow.”

“I’m happy. It was another good day, it’s very early, obviously, but it’s nice to keep building a nice good round after good round.”

Yesterday’s leader Lee Westwood is in third place at -8 under par, after his second round score -2 under 70.

In the overall contest to win the Race to Dubai, the current leader Henrik Stenson, from Sweden, remained in top spot after he fired a -3 under par 69 to sit at -3 under for the tournament T 17, the same score as number two Danny Willett who carded -2 under par 70 today.

Defending champion Rory McIlroy followed his disappointing opening  round +3 over 75 with a -4 under 68 for a tournament total of -1 under par and T 29.

Race to Dubai

 

DP World Tour Championship. Lee Westwood Leads.

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Lee Westwood leads the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.

DP World Tour Championship

Lee Westwood / getty

Lee carded an opening round -6 under par 66 at Jumeirah Golf Estates to top the DP World Tour Championship leaderboard in this season ending event;

“This is as good as I’ve played for quite some time.”

“I’ve found a couple of keys in different parts of my game and I’ve been working on them hard. It all came together today.”

“A 66 is a good round of golf. It didn’t seem that easy out there.”

“Some days you feel like there’s a lot of birdies out there but today I think was a pretty stiff test. They took the flags away a little bit. Didn’t seem like many first day flags out there and I managed my game well.”

“It’s a golf course I’ve played well on in the past and I’ve had quite a few good results here other than the win and played pretty well in the desert. I’ve been looking forward to this week.”

“2009 is certainly in the top two or three performances in my career, maybe even best performance of my career, knowing that I needed to win to beat Rory in the Race to Dubai, and I did that by six and pretty much dominated the field over the weekend. It’s right up there.”

Tied in second place at -5 under par are  Nicolas Colsaerts, who was bogey free and Julien Quesne.

Nicolas said he had missed a few short putts today;

“You know what? I left a lot of them out there, this could have been a really low one. This could have been eight or nine, easy.”

“I missed short ones on my early holes on the back nine but I was pretty happy with the display. I didn’t really hit that many bad shots.”

“The ones where I could go at pins turned out to be very close. It was just a flawless round of golf.”

“When you play that well, you want to squeeze every shot you can out of it but I’m happy with the way I played and I’m confident I can keep rolling like this.

Julien was happy to have putted well;

“I made a lucky birdie on the 14th, just a recovery shot and the ball finished three metres from the flag. I was hoping to have a par and made a birdie here, so it was good.”

“I made a two-metre putt on 17 and a two-metre putt on 18, so my putting was good today.

Rory McIlroy slumped to +3 over par 75 today, is he using different clubs?