By Brian Keogh
Brian Keogh is a golf correspondent for The Irish Sun and a contributor to The Irish Times, Golf Digest Ireland and other golf publications. The following excerpt from Brian’s Irish Golf Desk is used with permission.
|Graeme McDowell at Medinah. (Camflan)|
A RUTHLESS GRAEME MCDOWELL CAME UP trumps where Padraig Harrington and Paul McGinley failed when he overcame Thailand’s Thongchai Jaidee 2 and 1 in the final of the Volvo World Match Play Championship in Bulgaria.
The Portrush native became the first Irishman to etch his name on the trophy alongside some game’s legends and made amends for those painful defeats for Harrington and McGinley against Ian Woosnam and Michael Campbell at Wentworth in 2001 and 2005 respectively.
McDowell, who defeated Branden Grace 3 and 2 in his morning semi-final at the stunning Thracian Cliffs Beach and Golf Resort, was delighted to win for the second time in the space of just four weeks following his victory in last month’s RBC Heritage on the PGA Tour last month.
Those two successes have propelled McDowell to seventh on the Official World Golf Ranking, while his €800,000 first prize took him to the very top of The European Tour’s Race to Dubai.
Reading the names of the past champions of the 50 year old tournament that was first staged in 1964, McDowell said: “Els, Montgomerie, Westwood, Ballesteros, Norman, Lyle, Faldo, Player, Palmer—it’s just crazy stuff really.
“These guys are legends of The European Tour and legends of golf so to have your name on a trophy this cool is pretty special.”
VOLVO WORLD MATCH PLAY CHAMPIONSHIP
Thongchai Jaidee defeated Thomas Aiken 3 and 2
Graeme McDowell defeated Branden Grace 3 and 2
Graeme McDowell defeated Thongchai Jaidee 2 and 1
Brian Keogh covers golf for The Irish Sun and contributes to a variety of golf publications. Pay him a visit at Irish Golf Desk.