Dan­ish de­light in World Cup tri­umph

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

Thor­b­jorn Ole­sen and Soren Kjeld­sen proved the per­fect blend of flam­boy­ant youth and wily ex­pe­ri­ence as they com­pleted a shock tri­umph for Denmark at the World Cup of Golf in Mel­bourne yes­ter­day.

The pair dis­played tremen­dous poise un­der pres­sure to hold off their chal­lengers by four strokes to ac­com­plish the big­gest feat in Denmark’s golf­ing his­tory in the stroke­play team com­pe­ti­tion.

Denmark turned into the back nine at Kingston Heath with their four-shot overnight lead cut to just one, as a host of coun­triesin­clud­ing joint run­ners-up China, France and the US-queued up and waited for a stum­ble that never ma­te­ri­alised.

The enig­matic 26-year-old Ole­sen and his vet­eran 41-year-old part­ner Kjeld­sen in­stead played flaw­less four­ball (bet­ter ball) golf as they made six birdies on the back nine to fin­ish with a six-un­der 66 and a 20-un­der par to­tal of 268 to win by four strokes for their first ever World Cup tri­umph.

When Ole­sen se­cured the his­toric tro­phy with a birdie on the 18th, he raised his fist to the crowd be­fore em­brac­ing his team-mate Kjeld­sen, who was play­ing in his sixth World Cup. “We both came in good form this week and then we’ve just gelled so well,” Kjeld­sen said be­fore the pair hoisted the gi­ant World Cup tro­phy. “We’ve had an in­cred­i­ble week here in Mel­bourne, and I think a friend­ship has been built as well.” The US$8 mil­lion event fea­tured two-man teams from 28 coun­tries and rep­re­sented the big­gest vic­tory of each player’s ca­reer, with world num­ber 50 Kjeld­sen and 70thranked Ole­sen both hav­ing won four times on the Euro­pean Tour.

“It’s been amaz­ing, I love Aus­tralia. I have won in Perth also, so I don’t know what it is about Aus­tralia,” Ole­sen said af­ter see­ing off the vhal­lenge of joint run­ners-up France, China and the US. A nine-un­der round of 63 from Vic­tor Dubuis­son and Ro­main Lan­gasque en­sured France their high­est fin­ish in a World Cup, while a 65 from Wu Ashun and Li Hao­tong meant China came in on the same 16-un­der 272 mark as did the US team of Rickie Fowler and Jimmy Walker who carded a clos­ing 66.

It was a big week for the Chi­nese, par­tic­u­larly 21-year-old Li, who fol­lowed up his 23rd place fin­ish in the Euro­pean Tour’s Race to Dubai stand­ings a week ago with a bril­liant in­di­vid­ual per­for­mance yes­ter­day.

A key mo­ment came at the dif­fi­cult parthree 15th hole af­ter Kjeld­sen found a bunker and Ole­sen, un­der pres­sure, struck his tee hot glo­ri­ously to 10 feet and holed the birdie putt to give Denmark a three-shot cush­ion with three holes to play. The duo were al­ready boosted by Fri­day’s in­cred­i­ble round of 60 which had placed them four shots bet­ter than any other team on the day. Swedish duo Alex Noren and David Ling­merth fin­ished in style with a 10-un­der par round of 62 that in­cluded six birdies on the back nine, to pro­pel them to a fifth-place fin­ish.

— AP

MEL­BOURNE: Denmark’s Soren Kjeld­sen, left, and part­ner Thor­b­jorn Ole­sen hold minia­ture replica’s of their tro­phy af­ter win­ning the World Cup of Golf at Kingston Heath in Mel­bourne, Aus­tralia, yes­ter­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Kuwait

© PressReader. All rights reserved.