Rookie Davies wins first title

Reuters - Sun, 21 Mar 17:37:00 2010

Welsh rookie Rhys Davies captured his maiden European Tour title by winning the Hassan II Trophy.

Rhys Davies of Wales walks to the second hole during the third round of Malaysian Open 2010 golf tournament in Kuala Lumpur - 0

Welshman Davies, 24, carded a final round seven-under-par 66 to win by two strokes with a 25-under-par total, two ahead of South African Louis Oosthuizen who finished with a three-under-par 70.

Davies, who tied for third at the Malaysian Open earlier this month, joined the main Tour at the start of the 2010 season last December in South Africa.

"At this moment everything is all a big surreal," said Davies.

"I really did not think much at all out there and it was all much of a blur. I just kept focussing on hitting the ball as close to the flag as I could, and holing every putt I looked at."

Davies began the final round two strokes behind Oosthuizen but drew level when he collected the fifth birdie of his round at the par five, 10th hole.

He went one stroke clear of his South African rival when he birdied the 11th hole before Oosthuizen got back to one in front with a 12th hole eagle.

Davies answered the challenge with a 13th hole birdie before there was a two-shot turnaround in the Welshman's favour when he also birdied 14 and Oosthuizen dropped a shot.

Davies then pared his remaining four holes while Oosthuizen bogeyed 17 and then birdied the last for his fourth second place finish on the European Tour.

"I just felt like I could make every putt out there and that was the key to my round today," added Davies.

"I had really good speed on the greens and when you have that you can pick your lines and that's why I felt I could hole a lot of putts."

Frenchman Thomas Levet (71), Spain's Ignacio Garrido (70), South African Thomas Aiken (71) and Finland's Mikko Ilonen (66) shared third place on 18 under par.

Reuters

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