BMW International Open. Henrik Has Won His Tenth Title.

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Henrik Stenson, from Sweden, has won his tenth European Tour title, the BMW International Open in Germany.

BMW International Open

 

Henrik Stenson

Henrik had to play 36 holes on Sunday, and did it in style as he cruised to victory in the BMW International Open at Golf Club Gut Lärchenhof. His final tournament total was -17 under par, after carding -5 under 67 in the third round and -1 under 71 in his last round, which gave him a three shot winning margin;

“I’m delighted, I came close here the last two years so I finally get my hands on it again.”

“It was hairy all the way, it was a tough one. I had to dig deep to come back. I didn’t play well on the front nine, made a couple of mistakes, got caught out by the wind a few times and missed one or two putts I should have made as well.”

“I felt like I was starting to make a bit of a mess of it and then I came back and made the birdies on the par fives. I made some good putts closing out.”

“I really feel like I played well in 2015 and I just couldn’t get a trophy.”

“It was a bit hard at times but you’ve just got to keep on trying and put yourself in position. I did that once again and this time I managed to go all the way.”

 Thorbjørn Olesen from Denmark and Darren Fichardt, South Africa tied in second place at -14 under par.

Raphaël Jacquelin, from France, could only produce two rounds of even par 70, to finish his tournament at -11 under par, in fourth place on his own.

BMW International Open. Round Three Washed Out.

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Round three of the BMW International Open was washed out in Germany, torrential rainfall closed the  Golf Club Gut LaerchenhofBMW International Open

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just a little wet/ getty images

The second round leaders, Henrik Stenson, Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Raphaël Jacquelin will now have to play 36 holes tomorrow.

Henrik spoke about the long delays and of course the rain;

“We’ve got a pretty long day ahead of us tomorrow, but we’ll get it done eventually.”

“I think it’s been rather wet today,”It continues to be that way. We play an outdoor sport, you get these every now and again.”

“When it was a heavy downpour, there was a flood coming over the 18th and the putting green was completely underwater.”

“It’s not playable, and we’re just going to try to get all the golf done tomorrow instead.”

Tournament Director David Williams told reporters,

“Today in the last four or five hours, there’s been nearly 100ml of rainfall.”

“So it’s been pretty constant and on top of what’s already a pretty wet golf course.”

“We’ve been out to the third fairway a couple of hours ago and the entire fairway was unplayable. And even if it stopped, it would probably be a couple of hours before it would be anything like playable and the forecast is for it not to stop.”

“So we then decided we had to try and make some sort of solution for the good of the tournament.”

“This is going to continue until at least 7.00pm tonight. Hopefully after that, it’s going to start to peter out.”

“It should be relatively dry then through the night and into tomorrow.”

BMW International Open. Three Tied at the Top.

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Three players are tied at the top of the BMW International Open leaderboard in Germany. Henrik Stenson from SwedenRaphaël Jacquelin, France and Kiradech Aphibarnrat who hails from Thailand.

BMW International Open

Henrik Stenson / getty images

 

England have left the European Union, but the BMW International Open tournament carries on, with Henrik, Raphaël and Kiradech all sharing top spot on the leaderboard at the half-way stage with -11 under par totals.

Henrik carded a bogey free -7 under par 65, to join  Raphaël who was -4 under 68 today, and Kiradech hauled himself into contention with the days low round, -8 under par 64.

Henrik has regained his game face;

“I came here to really try to put myself in contention and so far, so good; I’ve done that.” 

“There’s been a few tournaments in this late spring, early summer, where I feel like maybe I’ve been showing up feeling like I’m working on my game and not been 100 per cent there to compete.”

“Now we don’t have too many tournaments before the Open Championship, the PGA and the Olympics.”

“It’s time to put that tournament focus back on and then go out and do a good job.”

“I’ve done that for two days and I’m going to try to push myself to do it another two.”

Raphaël was happy to put in another solid round of golf;

“It’s always good to shoot a solid round after a good 65.”

 “That gave me some confidence for the weekend and put me right up there.”

“I’m very happy about my ball striking and my short game. That was solid again all day long.”

“I’m just going to focus and stay focused on what I’m doing at the moment on my swing and my short game.”

“The rest, I’ll try my best to shoot low again, and we’ll see at the end of the weekend.”

Kiradech was glad his putter had started to work;

“This card is about the first shot.”

“You put yourself in the fairways, you have opportunities to make a lot of birdies, and my putter was working better than yesterday.”

“Striking the ball great at the flag, every single ball. It was a fantastic round.”

“I haven’t played good golf the last few months.”

“After I hit many good shots on the front nine, I got my confidence back and I believed in myself that I’m one of the top players.”

Thorbjørn Olesen is in fourth place at -10 under par, he shot -5 under 67 in the second round.

BMW International Open. Raphaël Jacquelin Round 1 Leader

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Raphaël Jacquelin is the round 1 leader of the BMW International Open  at Golf Club Gut Laerchenhof in Germany.

 Golf Club Gut Laerchenhof

Raphaël Jacquelin / Getty Images

 

 

 

 

Raphaël carded a 1st round -7 under par 65 to lead the BMW International Open by one shot in Germany.

He was naturally very pleased with his effort;

“I’m very pleased of course, as you can imagine.”

 “I played solid pretty much all day long. It was a bit tough at the end but I managed to save some good pars.”

“The wind was picking up again, so it was not easy at all.”

“I tried to stay focused on the game and the way I was hitting the ball and did pretty well and very happy for that and leading, t’s been a long time.”

“It’s a good feeling.”

“It’s been a long time, but it’s difficult. I’m still practicing hard and working hard on the game, and here we go, sometimes it pays.”

“I’m just going to try to do the same the rest of the week.”

In second place at -6 under par after his opening round of 66 is Oliver Fisher who was also pleased with his days work;

“The guys that hit the fairways and tee-to-green around here generally do pretty well.”

“Today that’s what I’ve done well, and a round of 66, I’m very pleased.”

“BMW are a great sponsor of the Tour and this is a great event, and I look forward to it every year, whether it be at Eichenried or here in Cologne.”

Sharing third place at -5 under par following their first rounds of 67 are  Zander LombardThorbjørn Olesen and  Felipe Aguilar.

European Tour. Volvo Golf Champions. Louis Lifts Trophy.

 

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Louis Oosthuizen lifts the European Tour Volvo Golf Champions trophy at Durban Country Club in South Africa. A final round of -4 under par 68 was good enough to see off the competition.

Oosthuizen starts 2014 in style

Louis and some local fans / Getty Images

Louis had some nervy moments towards the end of his round, a poor shot on 16 where he was lucky to be able to chip out, but still made bogey, and then he needed to make a birdie on the last to win;

“After my tee shot on sixteen I was lucky that I could chip it out and nearly made a great par. But when I stood over the ball on seventeen I saw that Branden had made birdie on eighteen so I knew that second shot was crucial to give myself a good opportunity and I hit it really close.

“And then eighteen, everyone thinks you just need to make a birdie but around that green it’s not easy and luckily I was far enough past where I could pitch it back into the grain and get it close. It was nerve-wracking through the round but I finished strong and I’m just happy that I got it done. It’s an awesome start for the year. Confidence-wise it’s great. I haven’t really played well last year with all the injuries so hopefully I can build from here on and just go better next time.”

Branden Grace captured second place, he also carded a -4 under par 68 in his final round, finishing with a -11 under par total, one shot adrift. He admitted it was terrible watching Louis pass him on the final green;

 “It was terrible watching it. But the winner at the end of the week is going to be the true champion and he played well so he deserves it. I thought I played some superb golf today. I let a couple slip out there which was unfortunate but if you had told me my first event I would start off with a second place, I would have taken it. This really gives you a push in the right direction so I’m really stoked.”

Tommy Fleetwood was the leader at the start of play, but he unfortunately could only produce a par last round of  72, which dropped him into a tie for third place with Joost Luiten, both at -10 under par.

Tommy said he hit the ball better off the tee, but it was the rest of his game that let him down at the crucial stage;

“Today was the best I have hit it off the tee all week and it was a shame the rest of the game let me down. After the long birdie putt on the second my putter went cold and it was not meant to be. It’s always great when you can be leading going into the final round of such a big event. I could have been four under, shot 66 and finished on the same score and not learned half as much. You have to take the positives and I have finished tied third in the first event and overall it’s been a very good week.”

Padraig Harrington and French duo Raphaël Jacquelin and Victor Dubuisson were another shot back on -9 under par.

European Tour. Volvo Golf Champions. Jacquelin Jumps Ahead.

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Raphael Jacquelin jumps ahead after the first round of the European Tour event at the Durban Country Club.

 

 

Raphael Jacquelin  (Getty Images)

Raphael Jacquelin / Getty Images

The conditions were blustery but that did not stop Raphael from carding a first round of -5 under par 67, to lead the Volvo Golf Champions by one shot.

Raphael said he was happy with his bogey free effort;

“I managed to get everything right, a bogey-free round; that’s the key, to go bogey-free every round on this course. It’s a new year and pretty good way for me to start, so that’s great.”

Defending Champion Louis  Oosthuizen is just one shot behind, after he recovered from a poor start, a bogey on the first hole, to score -4 under par 68.

Another shot further back, on -3 under par, sharing third place are Darren Clarke and Victor Dubuisson. A now slimline Darren, who has lost three stone in weight over recent months, delivered birdies on the second, eighth, tenth, 14th and 18th. He mentioned his new look;

“It’s something, I took a look at myself in October and thought it’s time to make a change. I am feeling strong. I reached 10 today, whatever it was, hit it 300 off the tee into the wind and hit driver from 285 to 12 feet and I couldn’t have reached there maybe five, six months ago.  So hopefully it will pay off.”

Colin Montgomerie is playing well and finished his first round at -2 under par with his opening round of 70. Colin said he struggles on the longer courses, so chooses his events carefully;

“I was playing well at the end of last year and I started to play a lot more golf. I had not been having much fun on 7,500-yard courses on the main tour but I am a member of three tours now (European Tour and two seniors tours) and it’s given me more freedom to choose courses I can get round. It’s very difficult and tricky out there, the wind was coming off the sea and made every hole a crosswind. You have to be very careful, you can make a mess out there in a hurry.”

Asides

I would love to see Volvo join the campaign to stop South Africa killing endangered species like Lion, Elephant and Rhino in penned in areas, just for the fun of rich tourists. It’s called canned hunting, the operators breed these animals and put them in penned in areas for tourists to shoot them, and it is legal. It is time to stop the killing of these creatures.

Volvo China Open. Dutchman Derksen Leads.

Dutchman Robert- Jan Derksen leads the Volvo China Open after the first round at Binhai Lake Golf Course in China.

Derksen back to his best in China

Robert-Jan Derksen / Getty Images

Robert-Jan,  a two-time European Tour winner, has not had a top-ten finish on tour for over two years, but he has suddenly found some good form here in China. In his first round he carded eight birdies, and two bogeys for a -6 under par, 66, and top the leaderboard, he said it had been a funny day, but was hoping for a good week;

” It was a funny day, because I started well with a birdie from about five feet, but then three-putted the third and fourth and ended up in three divots on the fairways later in the round. I made a lot of birdies, and I’ve ended the day in a really good position. The wind was difficult to judge, even on the greens. But I started making a few putts and my confidence lifted. I played well here last year, and decided to skip Korea last week to better prepare for this tournament, because the travelling can take it out of you. So it looks like a good decision. It’s only the first day, I know, but I haven’t led a tournament for quite a while, so if I can keep rolling in the putts, hopefully we could be in for a good week.”

Close behind Robert-Jan, tied in second place at -4 under par  are three of  the European Tour’s last five winners.  Thai Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Frenchman Raphaël Jacquelin and last week’s Ballantine’s Champion Australian Brett Rumford all carding matching rounds of 68.

Brett had a bogey free round, but said he was short on sleep;

“I didn’t get much sleep on Sunday night and then I took Monday and Tuesday to recover, Wednesday I just played the pro-am, so that was my practice for the week to give myself a chance to recover and get the body right. Mentally I feel nice and fresh, and obviously it was a bit of a mental grind out there with the wind. You had to be really patient, so it was a good test for the first round back after my victory last week. It’s just a matter of  keep doing what you’re doing.”

Kiradech, won his maiden European Tour title at the Maybank Malaysian Open in March said he was full of confidence following last weeks effort at the Ballantines;

I still have a lot of confidence from how I played last week, and obviously from Malaysia. I have played well for three or four weeks in a row now, and will try to finish high up the leaderboard again this week. In this type of wind you don’t know how you will do, but I’ll just try to do my best.”

Raphaël, who won last month’s Open de España was very happy with his start to this tournament;

It’s a great start, any time you have no bogeys and four birdies, it’s always a good day,” said the Frenchman.

“The wind’s picking up now, so we were lucky to play seven or eight holes without much wind. The course gives you a few birdie chances, but there were some holes, like the fourth, ninth and 17th, which were playing really long into the wind. I’m playing really well at the moment. Obviously my win in Spain was amazing, and I guess it was always going to be hard to keep the same high level in Korea last week.”

China’s newest young player, 12-year-old Ye Wo-cheng struggle on his debut on the European Tour, carding a first round of +7 over par 79. Sixteen year-old Dou Ze-cheng , finished his day by signing for an impressive round of -2 under par 70.