BMW SA Open. Graeme Beats Rory, in a Play-Off.

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Graeme Storm beat Rory McIlroy in a play-off for the BMW SA Open title at Glendower Golf Club in South Africa.

 BMW SA Open

Graeme & BMW SA Open Trophy / getty

Graeme shot a final round -1 under par 71, to be tied at the top of the BMW SA Open leaderboard with Rory McIlroy, -4 under 68 today. Both players were on -18 under par for the tournament, and a play-off began. It took three play-off holes, the par four 18th each time, before Graeme claimed the title, Rory carding a bogey third time around.

Graeme said after his second win on Tour;

“I am speechless. It’s been incredible and I can’t quite believe it.”

“This is a dream come true, especially after what happened to me last year with my card and everything.”

“I really took a lot from that experience and told myself to try and grasp the opportunity of getting my livelihood back with both hands and I have done that this week.”

“It’s an unbelievable feeling. I hung in there today and didn’t play my best stuff but I knew if I could hang in there that I might get my chance and thankfully it came.”

“It really means everything to me to be in the winner’s circle again.”

“I have been to hell and back to be honest with you. It’s been an absolute rollercoaster over the last year and a half, especially the end of last year.”

“There was pressure today but not the same pressure as trying to keep your European Tour card. That’s real pressure and something I don’t want to feel for a long time.”

Rory is sad that he lost, but happy with his start to the season;

BMW SA Open

Rory / getty

“I wish I could have done a little more but it’s not a bad way to start the season and gives me something to build on in the weeks ahead.”

“I am going for a scan tomorrow, I fly to Dubai tonight and then will go for an MRI tomorrow just to see what’s up with this joint in my back.”

“It was manageable this week with tape and a few pills so I am fine but first and foremost I have to get fully fit and healthy again and hopefully I’ll be alright to play next week.”

Jordan L Smith finished third, at -17 under par, a -4 under par 68 final round giving him that position on his own, an experience he would like to achieve again;

“That was insane, like nothing I have experienced in my life and I absolutely loved it. I am very pleased.”

“I was very, very nervous at the start of the round so to make those (early) putts was a big help and really settled me into the round.”

“It was just such an amazing experience today, especially coming up the last hole there. Honestly it was just insane.”

“I am absolutely delighted with the week overall. I would have loved to have won but I got myself into contention and looking forward this experience will be invaluable for my future.”

“I just can’t wait to play in front of crowds like this again. This has exceeded all of my expectations ahead of the week. I knew I was playing well and was confident coming here but I didn’t expect to end up in this situation.”

BMW SA Open. Graeme Storm In Cruise Control.

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Graeme Storm is in cruise control at the BMW SA Open, and will take a three shot lead into the final round tomorrow at the Glendower Golf Club in South Africa.

BMW SA Open

Graeme Storm / getty

Graeme shot a third round -5 under par 67 to stay in control  of the BMW AS Open with a 54 hole total of -17 under par. He will of course be very aware that Rory McIlroy holds second place at -14 under par, he too had -5 under 67 today.

Graeme is hoping to claim his second European Tour title, and is still making putts;

“I am just really pleased that I kept the momentum from yesterday and played really nicely and holed some good putts.”

“I find myself now in a position that I have only been in a couple of times over the past few years.”

“Things have been difficult and last year was a tough year but it has given me a new lease of life and I hope to continue playing well.”

“I thought I had lost my card and all of the privileges that come from playing on the European Tour and when that happens you realise that you can’t afford to lose it.”

“I have never played with Rory before and I know him really well so it will be a lot of fun.”

“If he hits a good shot and pips me or beats me comfortably or whoever makes a move from behind I can’t really control that.”

“All I can do is control my golf ball, I can’t control anyone else’s.”

“If I can shoot another score in the 60s I’ll be pleased even if I don’t win. I have come here as a big underdog so that is fine with me.”

Rory McIlroy (Getty Images)

Rory / getty

Rory wants a fast start tomorrow, and hopes to apply some pressure;

“I started well, I felt like I drove the ball well today for the most part and gave myself plenty of chances.”

“I took quite a few of them, especially in the middle of the round like I did yesterday as well, so it was a decent score.”

“I felt like it could have been a couple better. The finish was disappointing, not birdieing the 15th and dropping a shot on the way in but I’m still in with a shout going into tomorrow and that’s all I can ask for.”

“I’d like to be a few shots better or at least a few shots closer to the lead. Hopefully I can get off to a good start tomorrow and put a bit of pressure on Graeme and it will be interesting.”

Sharing third place are, Jbe Kruger, -3 under 69 today, and Jordan L Smith, -4 under 68, with -13 under par totals.

BMW SA Open. Graeme Storm Equals Course Record.

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Graeme Storm equals the course record as he stormed to the top of the BMW SA Open leaderboard at Glendower Golf Club in South Africa.

BMW SA Open

Graeme Storm / getty

Graeme carded a second round -9 under par 63 to lead the BMW SA Open at -12 under par,a two shot lead at the half-way stage. A thunder and lightning storm meant play was suspended before everyone could complete their rounds from the later starters.

Graeme said a red hot putter through both days was the key;

“The putter was hot, it was hot yesterday and it was hot today.”

“It’s obviously great to shoot a score like that, I had a putt on the last, it was a long putt to equal my best-ever score.

” Yesterday I didn’t capitalise as much as I did today.”

“I could have birdied a couple more of the par fives, I only birdied one of them today. So to shoot 63 and only having birdied one of the par fives around here, you know, I’ve played pretty well.”

“I tip Rory to win this week because he hits it miles and he hits it straight. If I keep on his tail, I’ll be happy.”

Sharing second place at -10 under par are, Trevor Fisher Jnr, -4 under 68 today, Jbe Kruger, -5 under 67 and American Peter Uihlein who scored -8 under 64 today.

Rory McIlroy, who carded -4 under par 68, and manged to bogey his last two holes, is in a tie for 5th, at -9 under par with, Laurie Canter, Jordan L Smith, Keith Horne and  David Drysdale.

Rory had considered withdrawing from the tournament, with a back problem;

“I’m actually surprised I’m standing here, I actually thought about pulling out before even teeing off today.”

“I tweaked my back somehow and the first few shots today weren’t very comfortable and it still isn’t really comfortable.”

“I can’t really take a deep breath because I’ve done something to my upper back.”

“I’m going to go get some treatment now. Considering that, I played well, stuck at it and hopefully I can feel better tomorrow.”

“I don’t want to withdraw, it would let a lot of people down so that’s why I kept going today. As I said, I’m going to get some physio now and hopefully I’ll feel better tomorrow.”

BMW SA Open. Two Tied at the Top.

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There are two players tied at the top of the BMW SA Open, local players Trevor Fisher Jnr and Keith Horne lead after the first round in South Africa, but Rory McIlroy is right behind them.

BMW SA Open

Rory McIlroy / getty

Trevor and Keith both carded first rounds of -6 under par 66 to lead the BMW SA Open, which is hosted by the City of Ekurhuleni.

Trevor admitted he hit a few bad shots, and can improve on that opening score;

“I hit some bad shots but I hit some good shots too and the ball really went where I wanted it to go with the good shots.”

“With my bad shots I mistimed it but, in general, I was quite happy with the way I hit it.”

“I can still improve it a bit. I’ve just got to trust what I’m doing. It’s quite a change for me.”

“Old habits die hard. I’ve just got to figure out a way to trust this and keep it going for the next three days.”

Keith said he needs to sort out his driver, but his putting was good;

“You know, I wasn’t playing that well coming in, I’ve been playing really well until the holidays but my practice rounds here didn’t promise very much so it’s nice to get off to such a good start. In contention, first out, I can’t complain.”

“I hit my irons beautifully today and I putted well. You know my putting hasn’t been great and today was nice.”

“I really struggled with the driver today and I think if I’m going to be in contention on the weekend, I am going to have to sort out my game off the tee box.”

Rory is tied in third place with four other players, all with rounds of -5 under 67, and said he was pleased with his effort, and he can go lower;

“Yeah, it was good, the first competitive round of 2017. I’m quite pleased.”

“I felt like I gave myself a lot of chances on our front nine, the back nine. That four under could have been probably six or seven but it was a really good way to start.”

“It was a bit scrappy in places around the last few holes but five under par is a good way to start to start this tournament.”

“Weather-wise, not much wind, there was a score to be had out there. I think 67 I am pleased with but I feel that if we get conditions like that for the rest of the week I can definitely go lower.”

Nick Faldo is in the field, shooting -2 under par 70, and is trying to make the cut;

“I know what I can do and how to do it but actually doing it is hard work.”

“I have been working on my swing which is this little fade and I am basically testing myself to see if I can do it for the whole round.”

“I would love to make the cut, that was the first goal.”

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. Victor Duibusion Has 54 Hole Lead.

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 Victor Dubuisson has the 54 hole lead at the  DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.

Victor / getty

Victor had  a third round -8 under par 64 in the  DP World Tour Championship at Jumeirah Gold Estates, giving him a one shot lead at -13 under par for the tournament.

Victor said he holed the putts he needed to;

“It’s a great score. It’s my best score to date. 

“I’ve played well, made good putts at the right time. I’m happy to be able to putt it in the hole.”

“It’s just a course I like, it’s long. You have to carry the ball long.”

Second place is shared between Tyrrell Hatton, -5 under 67 today, Nicolas Colsaerts, -6 under 66, and Mathew Fitzpatrick who also carded a third round -6 under par 66, all these guys are at -12 under par.

Nicolas had a big finish, an Eagle at the last hole;

 “A grandstand finish on the last is always nice, but it’s the same scenario again.”

“I go from shooting myself in the foot with a couple of three putts, missing short ones again, and then I play a game that’s probably nine out of ten.”

“So it can be very frustrating, when you get into this position in those big tournaments, it’s kind of maybe a little easier to keep digging in and not really let it away from you.”

Matt was happy with his round;

“I feel like I played really well today, I hung in there and hit some good shots coming in and finished strong. It was a good day.”

Tyrrell was also a happy man, putting well;

“I’m happy with the score. I got off to a fairly inconsistent start. But I putted pretty well again today, and that was the key to today’s score.”

Henrik Stenson might have to work to do to claim the Race to Dubai title, -2 under today leaves him at -5, and T 22.

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