Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Jamieson wades to win

Scot claims rain-shortened Nelson Mandela Championship

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DURBAN, South Africa -- Scotland's Scott Jamieson won his first European Tour title on Sunday, beating England's Steve Webster and Spain's Eduardo de la Riva in a playoff after the season-opening Nelson Mandela Championship was reduced to a 36-hole shootout because of rain.

Jamieson won with a par on the second playoff hole after Webster made a bogey. De la Riva was eliminated on the first extra hole as the three returned to play the par-4 No. 18 until the first tournament on the 2013 Race to Dubai was decided.

Jamieson had carded an 8-under 57 in his second round at the shortened Royal Durban Golf Club course, which was adjusted to a par-65 and reduced by about 1,600 yards after being deluged on Thursday and Friday because of thunderstorms.

Jamieson's score -- the second 57 of the day after South Africa's Jaco van Zyl -- gave him a 7-under total of 123 to tie with Webster and De la Riva.

Germany's Maximilian Kieffer, England's Matthew Nixon, Denmark's Morten Orum Madsen and South Africa's Tim Clark tied for fourth behind the playoff trio at 6 under 124.

The 29-year-old Jamieson birdied his last regular hole to snatch a place alongside Webster and De la Riva in the playoff. The 57s carded by him and Van Zyl were the first ever recorded on the European Tour but won't count as records after the par score for the course was reduced by five shots because of the troublesome weather over the past week in Durban.

"At the start of the day I probably didn't think I would be standing here holding the trophy but I knew I needed a fast start and I was lucky enough to get that," Jamieson said.

He birdied five of his opening nine and had eight birdies and no dropped shots in all, making use of the many more short holes on the layout after the readjustment to avoid some of the waterlogged fairways.

Webster, who was the only one of the three playoff contenders to have won a Tour title, posted five birdies for a 5-under 60. De la Riva had six birdies and two bogeys to finish with a 61.

Late finisher Clark was on course for a place in the playoff, and maybe even outright victory, until the former Players champion double-bogeyed No. 17. Even a birdie on the last saw him finish one stroke off the three leaders.

Van Zyl was tied for eighth after he earlier became the first man to return a 57 on the European Tour -- but he knew it wouldn't count as the low-round record.

"This week was very different to any other," he said. "I think if the tournament went to more rounds the record wouldn't have stood too long because the guys are getting the hang of the course now."

 

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 10, 2012 C5

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