Friday 19 December 2014

McDowell secures Heritage title

Published 22/04/2013 | 00:31

Graeme McDowell showed his character in South Carolina (AP)
Graeme McDowell showed his character in South Carolina (AP)

Graeme McDowell has won the RBC Heritage in South Carolina, beating US Open champion Webb Simpson in a play-off.

The Northern Irishman was four shots off the lead at the start of the final round but forced a play-off with a 69 from the closing 18 holes, finishing alongside America's Simpson on nine under par.

He then struck his approach on the extra hole to within 15 feet, two-putting for par. Simpson failed to match the feat when he missed from 10 feet, handing the 2010 US Open champion victory.

England's Luke Donald and Kevin Streelman, of the United States, were tied for third - two shots behind McDowell and Simpson.

McDowell's victory came at the end of a day when strong winds meant just three of the 70 competitors finished with rounds in the 60s - Donald and America's Russell Henley were the others.

McDowell produced birdies at the fifth, 11th and 16th holes, before bogeying the 18th. Simpson's 71 contained birdies at the second, third and 12th but bogeys on the fifth, eighth and 10th.

Overnight leader Charley Hoffman, who went into the final round with a two-shot advantage, paid for a poor start. Bogeys at the fifth, ninth and 10th damaged his hopes, before he got a shot back on the 12th.

However, his challenge ended with a double bogey at the 14th and dropped shots on the final two holes.

Donald - recovering from a poor third round - enjoyed a fine start to his round to catapult himself into contention, with a run of four birdies in five holes between the second and sixth seeing him make the turn in 32.

However, bogeys on the 10th and 13th - either side of a birdie on the 11th - slowed his momentum. England's Brian Davis finished nine shots off the pace after a final-round 74, with compatriot Greg Owen a further five shots back after closing with a 75.

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