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Golf Australia Express : Issue 4
SHOOTING five-over par in the final round and still hoisting a tournament trophy doesn’t happen too often. So it was the most enjoyable of 77s for Swede Alexander Noren on Sunday at the Nordea Masters as he survived a torrid day to register another European Tour win. Only by seven strokes, though. (Yes, seven strokes!) So brutal was the wind on the final day at Bro Hoff Slott that only one man— second-placed Englishman Richard Finch—carded an under-par final round. Scores in the high 70s were decent and anything under 75 was solid gold as the elements ripped the field apart. Most players scored in the high 70s for the their final round, many were in the 80s and Steve Webster and Fredrik Andersson Hed— who finished second at the Scottish Open just a fortnight ago—could be without sleep for a few nights after cracking the 90 barrier. Not even Noren was immune, despite him breaking the course record with a nine-under 63 the previous day. At 20-under after three rounds on the usually benign layout, Noren birdied the first hole, then pulled out five bogeys and a double bogey between the second and 14th to give Finch the faintest hope. But when he successfully negotiated the temporarily notorious island green at the par-3 17th, he was as good as home. Finishing with a birdie at 18 was a fitting finish for the 29-year-old, who now moves into the world’s top 70. Noren said he was just happy to hold his nerve in the conditions. “ I am so relieved. The only thing I thought of all day was the 17th,” he said. “I said it doesn’t matter how I play up to that, I just have to survive 17 and I did. “ I’ve never seen wind like this in Sweden. Every hole was super tough and even downwind it was hard to choose the clubs.” Tournament drawcard Bubba Watson paid for a slow start to the tournament and couldn’t make up any ground on Sunday, posting a six-over 78 to fall from second place into a tie for sixth. Australian Scott Hend finished just outside the top three at four-under. OTG “I’VE NEVER SEEN WIND LIKE THIS IN SWEDEN. EVERY HOLE WAS SUPER TOUGH AND EVEN DOWNWIND IT WAS HARD TO CHOOSE THE CLUBS.” — Alex Noren, winner in the wind WHAT JUST HAPPENED ON THE EUROPEAN TOUR WRAP THE FINAL STANDINGS 1 ALEXANDER NOREN SWE -15 €250,000 2 RICHARD FINCH ENG -8 €166,660 3 NIKLAS LEMKE SWE -5 €93,900 T4 SCOTT HEND AUS -4 €69,300 T4 PABLO MARTIN ESP -4 €69,300 T6 DUSTIN JOHNSON USA -3 €42,150 T6 SEUNG-YUL NOH KOR -3 €42,150 T6 JEEV MILKHA SINGH IND -3 €42,150 T6 BUBBA WATSON USA -3 €42,150 T10 JAMIE DONALDSON WAL -2 €27,800 T10 TANO GOYA ARG -2 €27,800 T10 JOHN PARRY ENG -2 €27,800 HOME SWEDE HOME