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Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by EGA 2018

Round 4 - Tommy Fleetwood retains Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

January 21, 2018

Tommy Fleetwood successfully defended his Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship title on Sunday after a sensational back nine to clinch the win.

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The 27-year-old Englishman, who celebrated his birthday on Friday, started the final round two shots behind overnight leaders Ross Fisher and Thomas Pieters, and an indifferent front nine saw him make the turn five shots behind Fisher as gusty winds hit the National course of Abu Dhabi Golf Club

But Fleetwood birdied the 10th, 12th, 13th, 15th, 16th and 18th holes for a seven-under par 65 round to finish on 22-under 267.

Fisher, 37, got off to a fast start when he made an eagle from 45 feet on the par-5 second hole and added two more birdies in his front nine. A bogey on the par-5 10th, which could have easily turned into a double if not for a 25-feet bogey putt, stalled his progress.

Playing two groups ahead of him, Fleetwood had birdied the 10th and 12th holes, but he saved his best golf for the next four holes. On the 13th, he was stymied behind a tree but hit his second shot from the desert to six feet.

The top-ranked European then rolled in a 25-feet putt on the par-3 15th to join Fisher at 20-under, before moving ahead with a 50-feet birdie putt on the 16th hole. He then picked up another shot on the 18th, which proved to be a luxury cushion when Fisher failed to make birdies on the 17th and 18th.

''I feel a lot more emotional, actually, than last year. I don't know why. I just really wanted to win this one,'' said Fleetwood, who is expected to advance from 18th to 11th in the rankings on Monday.

''I had the year of my life last year. I know everybody has been talking about it, and just backing it up is the next big thing, really. It's a weird feeling coming to defend a trophy because it's yours and you don't want to give it away.''

Fleetwood added that the tough conditions made it easier for him to focus.

''I wouldn't have known I shot 30 on the back nine when I came in. I was playing really well. I was hitting really good shots in. It was just a case of scoring being tough, and we had to keep going. It was sort of shot after shot.

''When the conditions are that tough and that windy, it actually helps you focus on each shot because there's never any easy shots. Two days before, with flat calm conditions, it was way easier to look ahead.''

A disappointed Fisher, who was runner-up twice late in 2017 and is winless since the Tshwane Open in March 2014, praised Fleetwood's perfomance.

''Hats off to Tommy. I don't feel like I've lost a tournament. He's gone out there and shot 65 and he's won it, so all credit to him,'' said Fisher.

McIlroy finished inside the top-five once again - his eighth top-five in nine Abu Dhabi starts - but he was happy with the result this time.

''It just felt great to get another tournament under my belt. It's a great start to the year. I have no complaints. My body held up really well. My game was probably better than I expected it to be. So I'm really happy with the week,'' said McIlroy who started well with two birdies in his first four holes, but could not get going on the back nine.

Pos. Player Nat To Par R1 R2 R3 R4 Total Race to
Dubai
Points
Prize Money
1 FLEETWOOD Tommy ENG -22 66 68 67 65 266 500,000 € 408,597
2 FISHER Ross ENG -20 67 67 65 69 268 333,330 € 272,395
3 FITZPATRICK Matthew ENG -18 68 70 63 69 270 168,900 € 138,024
3 MCILROY Rory NIR -18 69 66 65 70 270 168,900 € 138,024

Click here for full scores & prize money.

Round 3 - Fisher and Pieters tied for lead, McIlroy 1-behind

January 20, 2018

Rory McIlroy fired a 7-under 65 Saturday in the third round of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship to sit one shot behind leaders Ross Fisher and Thomas Pieters.

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Northern Ireland's McIlroy is on 16-under 200 overall with the former world No. 1 playing his first event since October.

England's Fisher also shot a 65, while overnight leader Pieters added a 67 to reach 17-under 199 on a low-scoring day in the absence of any wind at the Abu Dhabi Golf Club's National Course.

Top-ranked Dustin Johnson (68) is five shots behind the leaders.

Defending champion Tommy Fleetwood (67) was tied fourth on 201 with Matthew Fitzpatrick, whose 9-under 63 is the lowest round of the tournament so far.

McIlroy finally dropped a shot in the tournament on the par-3 15th when he could not get out of the greenside bunker in one attempt. He made up for this with a chipped-in birdie on the 17th and added another on the par-5 18th.

McIlroy has never finished outside the top five in seven of his last eight starts here.

''I've had a lot of close calls here, I think about six top threes or something like that,'' he said.

Fisher has been in good form since the second half of 2017, and has risen to 31st in the rankings. However, his last win came back at the 2014 Tshwane Open.

On Saturday, he started with three birdies in first four holes before dropping a shot on the fifth, and then played solid golf and made key par saves in his 65.

''I think a good momentum putt was probably the birdie on eighth,'' Fisher said. ''We traded birdies, good shots, and just thoroughly enjoyed the guys' company and look forward to doing it again tomorrow.''

Pieters was disappointed at not making a birdie on the par-5 18th hole to stay one ahead of Fisher.

''A lot of really good shots and then finished poorly,'' the Belgian said. ''That was a terrible last hole.''

Johnson is tied for 12th with four other players after six birdies and two bogeys.

Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
R1
R2
R3
Total
T1
Ross Fisher
ENG
-17
67
67
65
199
T1
Thomas Pieters
BEL
-17
67
65
67
199
3
Rory McIlroy
NIR
-16
69
66
65
200
T4
Matthew Fitzpatrick
ENG
-15
68
70
63
201
T4
Tommy Fleetwood
ENG
-15
66
68
67
201
T6
Andrew Johnston
ENG
-14
68
68
66
202
T6
Chris Paisley
ENG
-14
69
67
66
202
T6
Thomas Detry
BEL
-14
70
68
64
202
T9
Branden Grace
RSA
-13
72
64
67
203
T9
Dylan Frittelli
RSA
-13
69
67
67
203
T9
Paul Dunne
IRL
-13
68
70
65
203

Round 2 - Thomas Pieters takes Abu Dhabi lead

January 19, 2018

Thomas Pieters holed a bunker shot for a closing birdie and shot a second-round 65 to take a one-stroke lead at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship on Friday as top-ranked Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy moved into contention.

Embed from Getty Images

Johnson shook off the jet lag after his ragged opening-round 72 to shoot a bogey-free 8-under 64, tied for the low round of the tournament, and was four shots back. He won by eight shots two weeks ago at the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii.

''It was pretty easy for a 64. I did everything really well. I drove it well. I hit a lot of really good iron shots,'' Johnson said. ''Hit a lot of good putts that didn't go in the hole from pretty close range, but all day, I gave myself really good chances for birdies. Yeah, it was pretty stress-free.''

McIlroy, playing his first event since October, finished with an eagle on the par-5 18th and was three shots behind Pieters after a 66. The former world No. 1 is coming off a winless 2017 and plans a busy schedule in the run-up to the Masters. He's a four-time runner-up in Abu Dhabi.

''I always struggle to read these greens, the color of them, and I feel like I'm hitting good putts and they are just sliding by the edges,'' McIlroy said. ''But it was nice, I stayed patient and feel like I got what I deserved on the last for staying so patient, and it was nice to finish with a three, leapfrog a few guys and get myself into contention for the weekend.''

Jorge Campillo of Spain trailed Pieters by one shot after a 64. The defending champion and last year's Race to Dubai winner, Tommy Fleetwood - grouped with Johnson and McIlroy on his 27th birthday - was another shot back, along with Alexander Levy and Ross Fisher.

Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
R1
R2
Total
1
Thomas Pieters
BEL
-12
67
65
132
2
Jorge Campillo
ESP
-11
69
64
133
T3
Alexander Levy
FRA
-10
69
65
134
T3
Ross Fisher
ENG
-10
67
67
134
T3
Tommy Fleetwood
ENG
-10
66
68
134
T6
Andy Sullivan
ENG
-9
70
65
135
T6
Bernd Wiesberger
AUT
-9
67
68
135
T6
Paul Casey
ENG
-9
70
65
135
T6
Rory McIlroy
NIR
-9
69
66
135
T6
Sam Brazel
AUS
-9
67
68
135

Round 1 - McIlroy 3-strokes behind leaders Fleetwood and Tanihara

January 18, 2018

Rory McIlroy's patience was tested Thursday on his comeback and he needed three late birdies to register a 3-under 69 that left him three strokes behind first-round leaders Tommy Fleetwood and Hideto Tanihara at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

Embed from Getty Images

Starting on the 10th hole, McIlroy made 11 straight pars, which included a three-putt par on the par-5 18th.

Fleetwood, the defending Abu Dhabi champion and last year's European Tour money-list winner, continued his excellent form by hitting all 18 greens in regulation.

There was a five-way tie for third place with Fabrizio Zanotti, Ross Fisher, Thomas Pieters, Bernd Wiesberger and Sam Brazel shooting 67s.

Top-ranked Dustin Johnson drove his ball into a lake at the ninth, his closing hole, to finish with a 72. Matt Kuchar was also on level-par while Justin Rose went one better with a 71.

McIlroy, who hit 17 greens in regulation, collected his first birdie of the day by making an uphill 15-foot putt at the third and made further birdies at the seventh and eighth.

''First competitive round in over 100 days so it's a little bit different,'' said McIlroy, who last played at the Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland on Oct. 8. ''But I did well. I stayed patient.

''I gave myself loads of chances. Really pleased. I played very solid. I think I only missed one or two greens, drove the ball well and the iron play was pretty good. So just need to keep doing that over the next three days and I should have a chance.''

Fleetwood said he had control of his ball throughout.

''It was very good . very stress-free,'' he said. ''Played really well from start to finish.

''Felt like I did what you need to do well around this golf course, which is drive it well, hit your irons, but you can't really be too greedy all the time. My pace putting was really good. (Hitting) 18 greens doesn't happen very often so nice to do it around here.''

Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
R1
T1
Hideto Tanihara
JPN
-6
66
T1
Tommy Fleetwood
ENG
-6
66
T3
Bernd Wiesberger
AUT
-5
67
T3
Fabrizio Zanotti
PAR
-5
67
T3
Ross Fisher
ENG
-5
67
T3
Sam Brazel
AUS
-5
67
T3
Thomas Pieters
BEL
-5
67
T8
Andrew Johnston
ENG
-4
68
T8
Carlos Pigem
ESP
-4
68
T8
Matthew Fitzpatrick
ENG
-4
68
T8
Mikko Ilonen
FIN
-4
68
T8
Oliver Fisher
ENG
-4
68
T8
Paul Dunne
IRL
-4
68
T8
Richard Sterne
RSA
-4
68
T8
Richie Ramsay
SCO
-4
68
T8
Stephen Gallacher
SCO
-4
68

Scores

Pos. Player Nat To Par R1 R2 R3 R4 Total Race to
Dubai
Points
Prize Money
1 FLEETWOOD Tommy ENG -22 66 68 67 65 266 500,000 € 408,597
2 FISHER Ross ENG -20 67 67 65 69 268 333,330 € 272,395
3 FITZPATRICK Matthew ENG -18 68 70 63 69 270 168,900 € 138,024
3 MCILROY Rory NIR -18 69 66 65 70 270 168,900 € 138,024
5 PAISLEY Chris ENG -17 69 67 66 69 271 116,100 € 94,876
5 PIETERS Thomas BEL -17 67 65 67 72 271 116,100 € 94,876
7 LEVY Alexander FRA -16 69 65 70 68 272 90,000 € 73,547
8 STENSON Henrik SWE -15 70 68 70 65 273 75,000 € 61,290
9 CASEY Paul ENG -14 70 65 69 70 274 56,460 € 46,139
9 DETRY Thomas BEL -14 70 68 64 72 274 56,460 € 46,139
9 JOHNSON Dustin USA -14 72 64 68 70 274 56,460 € 46,139
9 JOHNSTON Andrew ENG -14 68 68 66 72 274 56,460 € 46,139
9 ZANOTTI Fabrizio PAR -14 67 69 68 70 274 56,460 € 46,139
14 CAMPILLO Jorge ESP -13 69 64 72 70 275 45,900 € 37,509
15 GRACE Branden RSA -12 72 64 67 73 276 41,400 € 33,832
15 HATTON Tyrrell ENG -12 69 70 69 68 276 41,400 € 33,832
15 WANG Jeunghun KOR -12 71 67 67 71 276 41,400 € 33,832
15 WIESBERGER Bernd AUT -12 67 68 69 72 276 41,400 € 33,832
19 DUNNE Paul IRL -11 68 70 65 74 277 36,000 € 29,419
19 FRITTELLI Dylan RSA -11 69 67 67 74 277 36,000 € 29,419
19 STERNE Richard RSA -11 68 72 67 70 277 36,000 € 29,419
22 APHIBARNRAT Kiradech THA -10 70 70 68 70 278 32,100 € 26,232
22 HEND Scott AUS -10 71 69 69 69 278 32,100 € 26,232
22 KORHONEN Mikko FIN -10 73 68 68 69 278 32,100 € 26,232
22 ROSE Justin ENG -10 71 71 67 69 278 32,100 € 26,232
22 WU Ashun CHN -10 71 67 72 68 278 32,100 € 26,232
27 HAN Seungsu USA -9 73 67 69 70 279 28,500 € 23,290
27 JENSEN Lasse DEN -9 70 71 70 68 279 28,500 € 23,290
27 KAYMER Martin GER -9 69 68 71 71 279 28,500 € 23,290
30 BJØRN Thomas DEN -8 73 69 69 69 280 26,250 € 21,451
30 MANASSERO Matteo ITA -8 70 71 70 69 280 26,250 € 21,451
32 BRAZEL Sam AUS -7 67 68 70 76 281 22,313 € 18,234
32 BROBERG Kristoffer SWE -7 69 69 70 73 281 22,313 € 18,234
32 COLSAERTS Nicolas BEL -7 69 70 71 71 281 22,313 € 18,234
32 FOX Ryan NZL -7 70 66 72 73 281 22,313 € 18,234
32 HEBERT Benjamin FRA -7 72 68 69 72 281 22,313 € 18,234
32 KARLSSON Robert SWE -7 71 70 70 70 281 22,313 € 18,234
32 KUCHAR Matt USA -7 72 70 69 70 281 22,313 € 18,234
32 WALLACE Matt ENG -7 71 68 72 70 281 22,313 € 18,234
40 AN Byeong Hun KOR -6 71 70 70 71 282 17,400 € 14,219
40 BURMESTER Dean RSA -6 69 72 67 74 282 17,400 € 14,219
40 CABRERA BELLO Rafa ESP -6 72 70 73 67 282 17,400 € 14,219
40 FICHARDT Darren RSA -6 73 67 71 71 282 17,400 € 14,219
40 ILONEN Mikko FIN -6 68 74 67 73 282 17,400 € 14,219
40 LORENZO-VERA Mike FRA -6 71 71 69 71 282 17,400 € 14,219
40 OTAEGUI Adrian ESP -6 70 69 73 70 282 17,400 € 14,219
40 RAMSAY Richie SCO -6 68 70 72 72 282 17,400 € 14,219
48 CAÑIZARES Alejandro ESP -5 71 71 71 70 283 13,500 € 11,032
48 KJELDSEN Søren DEN -5 72 70 72 69 283 13,500 € 11,032
48 LUITEN Joost NED -5 69 68 72 74 283 13,500 € 11,032
48 SCRIVENER Jason AUS -5 69 68 71 75 283 13,500 € 11,032
48 SHARMA Shubhankar IND -5 71 70 70 72 283 13,500 € 11,032
53 BERTASIO Nino ITA -4 70 71 69 74 284 9,825 € 8,029
53 GOUVEIA Ricardo POR -4 72 70 69 73 284 9,825 € 8,029
53 LAGERGREN Joakim SWE -4 69 73 69 73 284 9,825 € 8,029
53 OLESEN Thorbjørn DEN -4 69 73 71 71 284 9,825 € 8,029
53 PIGEM Carlos ESP -4 68 71 72 73 284 9,825 € 8,029
53 PORTEOUS Haydn RSA -4 72 70 71 71 284 9,825 € 8,029
53 STAL Gary FRA -4 72 69 74 69 284 9,825 € 8,029
53 SULLIVAN Andy ENG -4 70 65 73 76 284 9,825 € 8,029
61 BOURDY Grégory FRA -3 71 70 72 72 285 7,350 € 6,006
61 GALLACHER Stephen SCO -3 68 72 69 76 285 7,350 € 6,006
61 QUIROS Alvaro ESP -3 70 72 71 72 285 7,350 € 6,006
61 SLATTERY Lee ENG -3 69 72 69 75 285 7,350 € 6,006
61 SMITH Jordan ENG -3 72 70 69 74 285 7,350 € 6,006
61 STONE Brandon RSA -3 69 70 70 76 285 7,350 € 6,006
67 HAVRET Grégory FRA -2 70 71 70 75 286 6,300 € 5,148
68 TANIHARA Hideto JPN 0 66 72 74 76 288 6,000 € 4,903
69 BJERREGAARD Lucas DEN 1 72 69 73 75 289 5,585 € 4,564
69 KRUYSWIJK Jacques RSA 1 75 67 71 76 289 5,585 € 4,564
71 VINCENT Scott ZIM 4 69 70 73 80 292 4,500 € 3,677
72 AIKEN Thomas RSA -1 70 73 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 BJÖRK Alexander SWE -1 69 74 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 BROOKS Daniel ENG -1 72 71 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 COETZEE George RSA -1 72 71 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 DONALDSON Jamie WAL -1 73 70 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 DRYSDALE David SCO -1 72 71 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 FISHER Oliver ENG -1 68 75 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 HANSON Peter SWE -1 70 73 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 JACQUELIN Raphaël FRA -1 72 71 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 JAIDEE Thongchai THA -1 73 70 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 KIEFFER Maximilian GER -1 73 70 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 PARATORE Renato ITA -1 76 67 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 POULTER Ian ENG -1 75 68 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 ROMERO Andres ARG -1 72 71 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 WALL Anthony ENG -1 72 71 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 WARING Paul ENG -1 70 73 0 0 143 0 € 0
72 WESTWOOD Lee ENG -1 74 69 0 0 143 0 € 0
89 CHESTERS Ashley ENG 0 70 74 0 0 144 0 € 0
89 HORSEY David ENG 0 72 72 0 0 144 0 € 0
89 LIPSKY David USA 0 71 73 0 0 144 0 € 0
89 MCDOWELL Graeme NIR 0 70 74 0 0 144 0 € 0
89 MOLINARI Edoardo ITA 0 74 70 0 0 144 0 € 0
89 NORRIS Jason AUS 0 73 71 0 0 144 0 € 0
89 ORMSBY Wade AUS 0 73 71 0 0 144 0 € 0
89 PEPPERELL Eddie ENG 0 72 72 0 0 144 0 € 0
97 BLAND Richard ENG 1 74 71 0 0 145 0 € 0
97 CONNELLY Austin CAN 1 72 73 0 0 145 0 € 0
97 IMMELMAN Trevor RSA 1 69 76 0 0 145 0 € 0
97 LARRAZÁBAL Pablo ESP 1 71 74 0 0 145 0 € 0
97 LI Haotong CHN 1 73 72 0 0 145 0 € 0
97 ROCK Robert ENG 1 74 71 0 0 145 0 € 0
97 SHINKWIN Callum ENG 1 73 72 0 0 145 0 € 0
104 DECHAMBEAU Bryson USA 2 74 72 0 0 146 0 € 0
104 JAMIESON Scott SCO 2 75 71 0 0 146 0 € 0
104 LAWRIE Paul SCO 2 74 72 0 0 146 0 € 0
104 LEE Soomin KOR 2 74 72 0 0 146 0 € 0
104 PAVON Matthieu FRA 2 77 69 0 0 146 0 € 0
104 SOUTHGATE Matthew ENG 2 74 72 0 0 146 0 € 0
104 STORM Graeme ENG 2 74 72 0 0 146 0 € 0
104 WARREN Marc SCO 2 73 73 0 0 146 0 € 0
104 WATTEL Romain FRA 2 69 77 0 0 146 0 € 0
113 ELVIRA Nacho ESP 3 74 73 0 0 147 0 € 0
113 LOMBARD Zander RSA 3 73 74 0 0 147 0 € 0
113 MORRISON James ENG 3 75 72 0 0 147 0 € 0
116 DODT Andrew AUS 4 76 72 0 0 148 0 € 0
116 ELS Ernie RSA 4 76 72 0 0 148 0 € 0
116 SIEM Marcel GER 4 75 73 0 0 148 0 € 0
119 BUCHANAN Tom SCO 5 74 75 0 0 149 0 € 0
120 HANSON Chris ENG 6 71 79 0 0 150 0 € 0
120 KHONGWATMAI Phachara THA 6 77 73 0 0 150 0 € 0
120 WOOD Chris ENG 6 74 76 0 0 150 0 € 0
123 OLAZÁBAL José María ESP 7 78 73 0 0 151 0 € 0
124 KIRKWOOD (AM) Dan ENG 11 74 81 0 0 155 0 € 0
125 AL MUSHARREKH Ahmed UAE 22 86 80 0 0 166 0 € 0
126 IM Daniel USA 0 70 0 0 0 70 0 € 0

 

Preview

DATES: January 18-21
SITE: Abu Dhabi GC, Abu Dhabi, UAE
PRIZE MONEY: $3,000,000

 




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