Ned Bank Challenge. Henrik Stenson & Jaco Van Zyl Lead

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Henrik Stenson and Jaco Van Zyl are the first round leaders in the Nedbank Golf Challenge in South Africa.

Nedbank Challenge

Henrik Stenson / Getty Images

Henrik and Jaco both fired -6 under par 66 to lead the Nedbank Golf Challenge at the Gary Player Country Club in Sun City.

You would not have guessed Henrik was recovering from a bout of flu;

“I’ve been in bed with the flu for three days, and after I had to pull out of the pro-am on Tuesday I probably had a five per cent chance of playing.”

“I felt quite a bit better this morning and the doctor didn’t see any reason why I couldn’t play.”

“I’m delighted with the score but the last few holes I completely ran out of energy. From the 14th onwards my legs were like jelly and it was a real struggle.”

“I missed a couple of chances coming in but I would have taken one under standing on the first tee, so I’m very happy.”

Jaco was nervous at the start, but settled down to record a miserly 27 putts;

“It’s a great honor and privilege to be here.”

“I watch two events on TV each year, the Masters and this, so waking up this morning, instead of making sure the beers and the biltong were ready, I had to make sure my shoes were polished and my clubs were clean and go to work.”

“On the first tee I could feel my heart beating in my throat. It didn’t slow down for the first three holes but I managed to pick up a couple of quick birdies early on which settled the nerves a bit.”

“I hit ten out of fourteen fairways, and a couple I missed weren’t in trouble, just in the first cut.”

“There were a couple of short irons into par fours that I would’ve liked to get a bit closer, but the main thing is the 27 putts.

“Tomorrow I’m going to come out and enjoy every single moment.”

“It really is a thrill to be here. As a South African, it’s phenomenal to be part of this.”

Danny Willett, who was second to Rory McIlroy in the Race to Dubai recently, claimed third place. His opening first round score -5 under par 67 proving he still has the desire to go out and try to win.

DP World Tour Championship. First Round Four-Way Tie at the Top.

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There is a four-way tie at the top of the DP World Tour Championship leaderboard after the first round at Jumeirah Golf Estates in DubaiMarcus Fraser, Martin Kaymer, Ian Poulter and Andy Sullivan are vying to win the tournament, although none of them can win the European Tour season ending Race to Dubai.

DP World Tour Championship

Ian Poulter / Getty Images

Poults and his companions all shot a first round -6 under par 66 to sit on top of the  DP World Tour Championship leaderboard in Dubai. Poults  has now dropped out of the World’s top 50, and a win here would give him some satisfaction after a poor season;

“Dropping outside the top 50 isn’t very nice. Being down the list on the Order of Merit is not very nice.”

“There’s a lot at stake. I think more of it is probably pride than anything else.”

“And wanting to put some points on the board for Ryder Cup would definitely be very helpful.”

“So it’s been a long five weeks, and it would be nice to finish strong.”

Andy is only player of the top four who has won a tournament this year, and he enjoyed playing alongside Martin today;

“I think the way I played all year, I think it’s time for me to kick on and really get myself up there in these big events now and really try and press on.” 

“It was just great fun out there today.”

“Me and Martin both played really well, so it was good to have both of us pulling each other along, one get in front of the other, and both finishing six under.”

“But I’m swinging it really well on the range and I just said to myself, I’m the only person that can mess this up.”

“I just thought go out there and enjoy it like I normally do and be mentally good.”

“On the whole, I’m really happy with where we stand.”

Martin always plays well here, and he likes the place;

“We all know this is one of my favourite places where The European Tour goes.”

“It seems like I do well here usually and I’ve had great success in the past, whether it’s in Abu Dhabi winning a tournament or winning The European Tour rankings here in 2010.”

“So for me coming to this part of the world is always a great pleasure.”

Marcus liked the good greens, that helped him sink some putts;

“It was good, I felt like I played great, felt like I was in control of my game most of the day.”

“I managed to make a couple of putts , the greens are that good; if you pick the right line and you hit it on line, it’s going to go in.”

“It’s always nice to get off to a fast start and I kept it going.”

One shot behind the leaders is Francesco Molinari, at -5 under par, he is followed by a posse of players at -4 under, which included Race to Dubai leader Rory McIlroy and his nearest challenger Danny Willett.  They are joined on that score by Alejandro Cañizares, Matthew FitzpatrickMiguel Angel Jiménez, Chris Wood, Fabrizio Zanotti and Branden Grace.

BMW Masters. Kristoffer Broberg Maiden Win.

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Kristoffer Broberg claimed his maiden European Tour win at the BMW Masters in China.

BMW Masters

Kristoffer Broberg / Getty Images

Kristoffer beat Patrick Reed in a play-off for the BMW Masters title at Lake Malaren Golf Club in Shanghai.

Both players had finished the tournament at -17 under par an went into the play-off. Kristoffer, from Sweden, made birdie at the first extra hole. the par four 18th, to win the title. It was a dram come true for him, especially as Patrick had a short game to worry him all day;

“That’s a dream come true. I’ve worked so hard all my life for this.”

“I didn’t trust myself, a few weeks ago; I could never win here. I was just so down, and I’m so happy right now.”

“When I won on The Challenge Tour, once in a play-off in Norway, the players out there are really, really good and this field is just a really good field.”

“So I’m just happy to beat all of them. This means a lot to me.”

“His short game was unbelievable all day.”

 “I’m playing really good the front nine and I was struggling a bit, a little nervous on the last few holes. The four last holes I was really, really nervous.”

“I get to the play-off and I saw him hit it right. And I hit it a really good drive on the left side and thought, here is my chance, I want to get by the trap.”

“I hit a good nine iron up to four or five metres from the hole and was so happy.”

BMW Masters

Kristoffer Broberg Happy / Getty Images

Patrick had to settle for second place, while  Lucas Bjerregaard, Henrik StensonThongchai Jaidee and An Byeong-Hun tied for third at -16 under par, all just one shot off the play-off.

Justin Rose and Paul Casey were next, both finished with -15 under par totals.

Rory McIlroy did not have to worry about his lead in the Race to Dubai, nine of his closest rivals could make up any ground. So next week at  he will start at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship, in Dubai ahead of the pack.

BMW Masters. Jaidee Enjoys 54 Hole Lead.

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Thongchai Jaidee, from Thailand, enjoys a 54 hole lead at the BMW Masters tournament in China.

BMW Masters

Thongchai Jaidee / Getty Images

A third round -6 under par 66 at Lake Malaren Golf Club helped Thongchai to take over at the top of the BMW Masters leaderboard with a -15 under par total. A win here would close the gap at in the Race to Dubai competition, so tomorrow is a very important day;

The key for Thongchai will be his iron play, and of course putting;

“If I play well like this and keep performing like this, I have a good chance. But golf, you never know what you’re feeling tomorrow for the 72 holes.”

 “My iron play, I think that’s the key, and putting. Tomorrow I’m going to play my own game.”

 “I played well, we hit a lot of greens. I think today we putted well.”

“I think my game plan this week is good. I’ve hit irons well, I’m working on putting and that’s what gave me very good confidence for today.”

“Six under is a very good score.”

“Tomorrow is a very big day.”

South Korean An Byeong-Hun, Sergio Garcia from Spain, and Lucas Bjerregaard from Denmark share second place, just one shot back at -14 under par.

Sadly the biggest news did not include golf, Frenchman Victor Dubuisson posted his reaction to the terror attack in Paris on Instagram.

 

BMW Masters. Lucas Bjerregaard Leads.

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Lucas Bjerregaard has the 36 hole lead at the BMW Masters tournament in China.

BMW Masters

Lucas Bjerregaard / Getty Images

Lucas shot  a second consecutive round of -6 under par 66 to sit on top of the BMW Masters leaderboard at -12 under par in Shanghai. He came close to winning his maiden European Tour title last time out, in Hong Kong, and hopes to go one better this week;

“It was nice in Hong Kong to prove to myself and to everyone else that I can still compete up there.”

“So hopefully I can do that again this week and just come up one place better than last time”

“It was a great round and I finished off with some good birdies coming in. A great birdie there on six, a tough par three today.”

“Nothing much really happened on the first nine, I just played really solid. But I thought it was a good bit tougher than yesterday with the wind up.”

“Some of the holes were playing really long.”

“But I made some good putts, made some good par saves as well to keep the round going, so that was nice.”

Sergio Garcia and Thongchai Jaidee share second place, three shots back at -9 under par.

Ian Poulter, Paul Casey and An Bye-ong Hun are tied in third spot at -8 under par for the tournament.

It was some very windy conditions today, but that did not worry Peter Uihlein who had seven consecutive birdies today, to finish at -7 under par. He was playing alongside the leader, and the pair of them had some fun out there, according to Lucas;

“We had good fun. He’s a nice guy. We played three rounds together in Turkey, as well, so it was nice that we both played well.”

Race to Dubai leader Rory McIlroy is not competing this week, so that gives an opportunity for closest challenger Danny Willett to narrow the gap. Danny is currently at -3 under par for the tournament. Poults, Justin Rose and others will be looking to do the same thing.

WGC Championships HSBC Champions. Great Scott Russell Knox Wins

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Another great Scott, Russell Knox wins the WGC Championships HSBC Champions title at Sheshan International Golf Club in China.

HSBC Champions

Russell Knox / Getty Images

Russell had a final round -4 under par 68 to win the  WGC Championships HSBC Champions title with a -20 under par total, and claim his Maiden European Tour title;

“I always thought I was going to win a big one for my first one.”

“This is going to take a long time to sink in.”

“I’m over the moon.”

“This is now my favorite tournament, I look forward to playing it for many years to come.”

Kevin Kisner finished in second place, two shots off the pace at -18 under par. A final round of -2 under par 70 not good enough to challenge for the title.

Third place was shared by the English pair of Danny Willett and Ross Fisher, both on -17 under par.

Danny carded a fantastic final round of -10 under par 62, which has put serious pressure on Rory McIlroy in the Race to Dubai European Championship event. Ross looked like he would make a challenge for the title, but a bogey on the par four 15th derailed him.

Tied fifth were big hitting Dustin Johnson and Branden Grace, both at -16 under par. With his great length off the tee Dustin somehow failed miserably in the last round, -1 under par 71, while Branden seems to struggle with the putter, that claw-grip is not consistent enough, his -4 under 68 an average score for the day.

Rory came back today, a last round -6 under 66 giving him a total of -14 under par, you just have to wonder what he could have done without that bout of food poisoning.

Jordan Spieth came down to Earth after yesterdays great -9 under par63, his last round -2 under 70 leaving him in a tie for 7th place in the group at -15 under par.

Hao Tong Li, the 20-year-old from China, joined Jordan, Patrick Reed and Matt Fitzpatrick on that -15 under total. The young Chinese player could not quite handle the pressure of playing in front of his home crowd.

72° OPEN D’ITALIA. Three Way Tie at the Top

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There is a three-way tie at the top of the 72° Open D’Italia tournament  at Golf Club Milano in ItalyMartin Kaymer, Jens Fahrbring and Romain Wattel have a two shot lead over the chasing pack.

72° Open D'Italia

Martin Kaymer / Getty Images

Martin fired a third round -7 under par 65 to join Jens and Romain at the top of the 72º Open D’Italia leaderboard with a -17 under par 54 hole total.

Martin was one of the favorites coming into this tournament, he thought he could have done better today, with a couple of putts that should have gone in;

“I started off well, but those last three holes I think I left a couple out there especially on 16 and 17, they were good putts they just didn’t go in.”

“Sixteen was a very, very poor chip but that’s okay, seven under par is a very good round.”

 “I am looking forward to tomorrow, it will be a challenge to myself and a challenge to beat my opponents. I am up there with a chance to win on Sunday and that’s all you want at the end of the day.”

“It’s important that you don’t look too far ahead and start to think about what could happen.”

“You also don’t want to rush into an aggressive mode too soon. It might be the case that some of the guys who are out before me make a really fast start so it is a fine line to figure out what the best plan is.”

“You have to also enjoy the day and I think I have enough experience of being in this position to enjoy it.”

“It will be interesting to see what happens over the first nine holes and to see how I feel mentally.”

“Once you get on the back nine you have to be a bit more spontaneous and adjust to the situation around you.”

Three players are in a group at -15 under for the competition;  Bernd Wiesberger, -5 under bogey free 67 today, Lucas Bjerregaard, -2 under 70 and Fabrizio Zanotti, -4 under par 68.

This will be an exciting finish to the 72º Open D’Italia tournament, with 15 players within five shots of the lead, including Danny Willett who is currently second in the Race to Dubai, and -12 under here in Italy.