Sunday, 07 February 2016
Day 4 Highlights - Omega Dubai Desert Classic

Danny Willett made a brilliant clutch putt on the last to win the Omega Dubai Desert Classic in dramatic style at Emirates Golf Club.

The Englishman began the day with a one-shot lead and opened that up to three shots twice on Sunday afternoon, but a birdie on the last from Andy Sullivan and a birdie-birdie finish from Rafa Cabrera-Bello meant he needed to make a 15-foot putt for the title.

And make it he did, the 28 year old showing nerves of steel to send the ball down the slope, left-to-right and into the cup to seal his fourth European Tour win.

"I'm ecstatic," he said. "You can't buy that feeling, coming down the back nine, the last three holes, in contention in a golf tournament. It's something that you can't pay for in life. You've got to earn it.

"Coming down the last with all the situations that were going on. It's just nice to know that I can dig deep there and produce.

You'd love to win by five or six every time you win, but when you win in that fashion, it does feel that little bit extra special - Danny Willett

"It's a relatively daunting last hole. I needed to make a four to win. So I'm just delighted with how I dug deep and found it."

The win could send Willett into the top 15 in the Official World Golf Ranking and gives a major boost to his stated ambitions of making Darren Clarke's Ryder Cup team for Hazeltine.

For Sullivan, meanwhile, it is the second consecutive tournament in Dubai where he has been edged out, after finishing second to Rory McIlroy at the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai in November.

It is the second week in succession that Cabrera-Bello, winner here in 2012, has finished in a share of second and makes it three top 15 finishes on the 2016 Desert Swing for the Spaniard.

Willett and Sullivan had been battling it out throughout the day, with the latter taking a one-shot lead early as he got off to a brilliant start with birdies on the second and fourth.

But Willett found his rhythm, and when he made a birdie on the par three seventh, his lead was up to three shots and he looked to be cruising to the title.

The lead was cut to one by the turn but back-to-back birdies on the 12th and 13th had it back at three before a bogey on the 14th, coupled with a Sullivan birdie on the next, tightened things up again.

Cabrera-Bello had turned in level par but birdied the 13th and when he made another on the 17th, he was just a shot off the lead.

Sullivan showed great heart with a 12-foot putt on the last for birdie to join Willett at 18 under and, when Cabrera-Bello also birdied the last, the stage was set for Willett to roll in his putt for a brilliant victory.

Byeong-hun An and 2011 champion Alvaro Quiros both finished with rounds of 65 to sit three behind the winner at 16 under, while McIlroy was a further shot back after a 65 of his own, alongside Henrik Stenson.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1WILLETT, DannyENG18-19
T2SULLIVAN, AndyENG18-18
T2CABRERA-BELLO, RafaESP18-18
T4QUIROS, AlvaroESP18-16
T4AN, Byeong HunKOR18-16
T6MCILROY, RoryNIR18-15

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