Sweden’s Henrik Stenson ended a three year wait for his second victory on The European Tour when he claimed The Heritage at Woburn Golf and Country Club.
The man from Malmo triumphed by four strokes from Spain’s Carlos Rodiles, who carded a 65. Sweden’s Patrik Sjöland came home in third place after shooting 71.
Stenson held a one stroke lead over Sjoland at the start of the final round and never looked back after making an eagle three on the fourth. In an impressive display of front running the Swede pulled away for a convincing victory thanks to four birdies in a row from the 14th. “I am over the moon. It was a great finish,” said Stenson, who won €333,330 (£226,436).
The 28 year old was a rising star in 2000 when he finished first on the Challenge Tour after three wins. The following year he triumphed in the Benson & Hedges International Open at The De Vere Belfry but soon after lost his form and finished 176th on the Volvo Order of Merit in 2002.
“My confidence was very low and at times you are wondering what you are doing. Some people stay and fight the battle and others give up and I think I fought pretty well and I am back in the winners circle and I am pretty happy about that,” added the Swede.
The Swede has been helped back to form by Pete Cowen.
“I owe him a lot and very happy it worked well this week and it is definitely coming on nicely. It is always going to be tense going out in the last group and playing for a tournament. I wasn’t happy with all the shots but I managed to stay calm,” said Stenson.
Rodiles stormed through on the final day with a brilliant back nine of six under par 32.
“I am very pleased with the way I played all day. Playing with Ian (Woosnam), he made a lot of birdies as well and we both kept going, he made birdie, I made birdie,” said Rodiles
Sjöland, paired with Stenson, struggled on the greens but was delighted with one of his best performances for a long time.
“I am pretty pleased over all. If someone had said that before the week that I would finish in third place I would probably take it but I was not very happy with my game. I did not play that good today. I had struggled a bit on the greens on the front nine and then on the back nine I felt like I was hitting many good putts but they just not did not drop. That is the way it goes sometimes. I am very pleased with the week,” said Sjöland.
Wales’ Ian Woosnam, looking for his first win since 2001, threatened for the title and was a couple of shots off the lead early on the back nine but bogeyed 15 and double bogeyed 17.
“I just had a couple of bad drives. Just tried to swing easy but I let the club get away from me,” said Woosnam.
England’s David Howell finished the week as the leading player from Europe’s winning Ryder Cup team ending in a tie for 17th. He closed with a 67 to lie one seven under while Ireland’s Padraig Harrington was three strokes further back following a 70.