Friday, 19 March 2010
Colin Montgomerie, European Tour Number One for the past six successive seasons, shot a final round of 68, four under par, to win the Benson and Hedges International Open for the first time with a commanding three-shot victory.

The Scot, playing in only his second European Tour event of the season, held off the challenge of Argentina's Angel Cabrera and Sweden's Per-Ulrik Johansson on a windy afternoon to close 15-under-par total of 273.

"I try to base my game on a lack of mistakes and this week I've only dropped two shots over 72 holes. That's good for me," said Montgomerie, whose only two bogeys all week came in the third round.

Cabrera briefly held the lead at 12-under and was just one shot behind with two to play but a dropped at the last left him joint second with Johansson on 276.

Spain's Miguel Angel Jimenez, joint leader after the first round, returned a 68 to share fourth place on 277 with compatriot Diego Borrego (70).

Montgomerie began the final day a shot clear of Masters Champion Jose Maria Olazabal, the third time in four years that he has started the final round in the lead.

After Montgomerie opened with five successive pars he broke free with birdies at the sixth and the seventh. Further birdies at the 11th and the 17th gave him his 18th victory in Europe.

"I've been in a good position here before but couldn't capitalise on my good early play. Today was different - and 68 round here with the pins in some difficult positions takes some doing."

Although Cabrera bogeyed the last, he was happy enough with his overall play.

"When I stood on the 18th tee, I knew I had to make three but I pushed my second shot right. This is the best I've played, though, and hopefully I can continue to play like this," Cabrera said.

England's Jeremy Robinson, nine shots off the lead overnight, soared up the leaderboard in the morning sunshine with a course record eight-under-par 64.

The Yorkshireman, who only got into the tournament as second reserve after the withdrawal of Germany's Alex Cejka, fired eight birdies and an eagle three at the seventh to move up from 55th to sixth place.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1FALDO, Sir NickENG18-9
T3LYLE, SandySCO18-4
T3LUNA, SantiagoESP18-4
T5BOXALL, RichardENG18-3
T5MARTIN, Miguel AngelESP18-3
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