Volvo World Match Play Championship comes to an end
Volvo World Match Play Championship at the Finca Cortesin Golf Club Andalucía, Spain has been another feather in the European Tour’s cap as the tournament turned out to be a great success after its return in two years. Ian Poulter, the Tucson champion of
2009, came out of obscurity to lift yet another Match Play title in the strongest of fields in tournament’s history.
Five out of the six top players in the world among the field of 24, were pitched in to summit the lucrative €3.4 million event. All present four major players, Masters champions Charl Schwartzel, US Open champion Graeme McDowell, PGA Champion Martin Kaymer
and the Open champion Louis Oosthuizen were locked in a tight battle that spanned for four consecutive days. The field was divided into eight groups of three players each with the top two players proceeding to the knock-out stage.
Poulter defeated world number two Luke Donald who had his eyes set on the top slot of not only the tournament but also the OWGR. Donald, who had defeated Kaymer in the morning sessions of semifinals, did not perform equally well in the evening, giving in
to the immense pressure exerted by Poulter. This was Poulter’s first European Tour victory after the 2010 UBS Hong Kong Open and has won 11 times on the tour in his 252 appearances.
The quarter finals as well as the semifinals provided excellent professional golf to the viewers throughout the world. Hordes of spectators thronged the course on all four days, to witness the top golfing brass compete with each other. Many of the blazing
guns of the sport had already left before the 16 players were finalized for the next round. Open champion Louis Oosthuizen, Retief Goosen, Dane Anders Hansen, Y.E. Yang and American Ryan Moore made an early exit from the tournament after their consecutive
losses in the opening rounds.
Some of the biggest victims of the knock-out 16 were none other but the world number one Lee Westwood and world number six Rory Mcilroy. Defending champion Ross Fisher, Australian Aaron Baddeley and American Ryan Moore were also showed the door. Kaymer,
again showing his knack for the Match Play format, made it all the way into the semifinals when he first defeated Alvaro Quiros by two holes only to lose it again to his biggest nightmares Donald.
Donald outclassed Kaymer with his precision play to set a Match Play final with countryman Poulter. While Poulter, in his semifinal bid, pulled out every trick from the book to defeat the defiant Nicolas Colsaerts.
Donald, as well as Kaymer had been looking to overthrow Westwood from the top slot and both will have to try their luck again in the upcoming event in Wentworth this week. Donald had to settle for runners up share of € 377,770 while Poulter collected the
winner’s cheque of € 566,660.