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I lived the dream - Bernhard Langer bids emotional farewell to the DP World Tour

I lived the dream - Bernhard Langer bids emotional farewell to the DP World Tour

Bernhard Langer said an emotional farewell to the DP World Tour as he brought the curtain down on a 50-year dream come true at the BMW International Open.

The German made his DP World Tour debut in 1974 and would go on to play over 500 events, claim 42 wins including two Masters Tournaments, win the Harry Vardon Trophy twice and star in the Ryder Cup as a victorious captain and player.

This week at Golfclub München Eichenried he played his final event, carding a brilliant opening 71 and then playing through the pain in a second-round 73 in front of huge galleries.

That did not see him make the weekend but he got the biggest cheers of the week, holing a gutsy nine-footer on the last for a par before leaving the green to a rapturous ovation.

The 66-year-old was showing signs of emotion as he played the 18th and he had to fight back tears as he spoke post-round, reflecting on a journey and a career that has seen him and the DP World Tour give each other so much.

"It's hard to put into words," he said. "It's kind of been a dream come true for me, growing up in a village of 800 people where nobody knew what golf was.

"When I told my classmates that I was going to play golf they thought I was crazy, they thought I was a mini golfer. People had no idea, it was really a strange situation.

"Even when I finished school and I tried to become a golf professional people didn't even know what that was, it didn't even exist as a profession in a way. So it was very difficult and complicated but it was my dream. I was able to live that dream for 50 years.

"I have wonderful memories from all over the world, not just in Europe but Asia, Australia, Japan, America, South Africa. I was able to travel the world and meet with kings and queens.

"I played golf with all sorts of people, whether they were successful businessmen or just the average butcher or bricklayer or whatever, it was fun, it was great."

It was not all plain sailing for Langer, who had the putting yips several times in his career and has admitted it had him considering giving the game up at times.

But he fought back and revealed he was immensely proud of the legacy that he and fellow European greats Seve Ballesteros, Sir Nick Faldo, Sandy Lyle and Ian Woosnam - known as the Big Five - had left.

"I had lots of ups and downs in my career," he said. "There were difficult times with the yips and other things but I had many wonderful moments.

"It was a privilege to play with the Big Five as they call them. I think we spurred each other on and I believe we probably made the Tour in the 80s and 90s what it is now, what it has become.

"It was fun playing against these guys and the youngsters now bear the benefits of that."

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