England’s Ian Poulter fired an excellent final round of 67 to reel in home favourite Geoff Ogilvy and win the JBWere Australian Masters at Victoria Golf Course in Melbourne.
Poulter began the final day two behind Ogilvy after the Australian had posted a superb third round score of 63. But the Englishman quickly wiped out the deficit with an eagle two at the short par-4 opening hole.
Two more birdies on the 7th and 9th holes gave Poulter the lead heading into the back nine. Ogilvy played steadily in the blustery conditions but the putts simply refused to drop. The 2006 US Open champion opened with 12 successive pars and remained well in the hunt.
But dropped shots on the 13th and 15th holes put the title beyond Ogilvy and Poulter cruised home to victory. It was a great finish to 2011 for the 35-year-old and one that moves him back into the world’s top-20.
“For me it was a pure ball-striking round,” he said. “My concentration was flawless all day and I was happy with how I approached every shot.”
Round of the day was posted by Marcus Fraser. The Australian closed with an excellent 64 to race up the leaderboard and finish the week alone in second place, one ahead of Ogilvy. It was a great effort in challenging conditions.
“I hit a lot of good shots this week,” he said. “It would have been nice to hole a few more putts at the start of the week, but I got my fair share today.
Other than Poulter and Fraser, the only player to fire four rounds under par was 52-year-old Peter Senior. He finished in a tie for fourth with Adam Crawford.
World Number 1 Luke Donald finished the week in a tie for 12th place on four-under-par. Another solid result at the end of a spectacularly succesful year.
JBWere Australian Masters
Victoria Golf Course, Melbourne, Australia
Dec 15-18, purse $1,000,000, par 72
1 Ian Poulter (Eng) 65 68 69 67 269 $180,000
2 Marcus Fraser (Aus) 70 69 69 64 272 $102,000
3 Geoff Ogilvy (Aus) 71 66 63 73 273 $67,500
T4 Adam Crawford (Aus) 74 68 69 66 277 $44,000
T4 Peter Senior (Aus) 69 70 68 70 277 $44,000
T6 Brad Kennedy (Aus) 71 69 69 69 278 $32,333
T6 Kieran Pratt (Aus) 67 70 69 72 278 $32,333
T6 Ashley Hall (Aus) 66 70 68 74 278 $32,333
T9 Kurt Barnes (Aus) 70 71 70 68 279 $24,666
T9 Peter Lonard (Aus) 67 70 69 73 279 $24,666
T9 Nathan Green (Aus) 69 68 67 75 279 $24,666
Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage
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