Jimenez Survives Ugly Finish in Hong Kong

By Sports NetworkNovember 18, 2007, 5:00 pm
European TourHONG KONG -- For the second straight week, the two players atop the leaderboard stumbled to a bogey and a double-bogey on the final hole.
This week, Miguel Angel Jimenez came out on top despite a three-putt bogey at the last. Last week, Phil Mickelson made bogey on the 72nd hole and Ross Fisher made double-bogey, before Mickelson won in a playoff.
Jimenez closed with a 3-under 67 Sunday to win his second Hong Kong Open title. He finished the event at 15-under-par 265.
At the par-4 closing hole, Robert Karlsson and Jimenez were tied for the lead on the tee. Jimenez found the right rough with hit tee shot before Karlsson's tee ball split the fairway.
Jimenez played first and his second stopped some 30 left of the pin. Karlsson then came up short with his approach.
Karlsson went right under his first chip and it stopped about 5 feet from where he was standing. He pitched his fourth to 5 feet.
Jimenez had a delicate downhill putt. He left his first putt some seven feet short, then missed his par-saving putt on the left edge.
Karlsson pushed his bogey putt right and tapped in for double-bogey.
'He was very solid and played very well,' Jimenez said of Karlsson. 'I don't like the way he finished. It is not the way to finish after leading through the tournament. I feel sorry for him, but that's the game.'
Jimenez kicked in his short bogey putt for the win.
'What a day, I'm still shaking myself,' said Jimenez afterwards. 'I was nervous the last three holes, but I played very solid on the back nine especially.
'At the 18th, I saw what happened to Robert. I had a downhill putt that was supposed to be very, very fast with downgrain too. I just left it short, then I started shaking myself. It was a long way short. I never expected it to be that short.'
Karlsson, who led after the second and third rounds, finished one shot back at minus-15 after his closing double-bogey. He posted a 2-over 72 to drop into a share of second with local favorites Thongchai Jaidee (65) and K.J. Choi (67).
Peter Hanson took fifth at 13-under-par 267 after a closing 68. Graeme McDowell was two shots further back at minus-11 after a 68 of his own.
The final round saw Karlsson push his lead to as many as four shots before Choi caught him with an eagle on 13. Jimenez didn't grab a piece of the lead until he birdied the 16th at Hong Kong Golf Club.
Karlsson opened with a 4-foot birdie putt at the first. He dropped a shot on five, but bounced back with a chip-in birdie on six.
Choi, playing two groups ahead of Karlsson, flew out of the gate with three birdies in the first four holes. After a bogey at six, Choi birdied the seventh to move to minus-14.
The Korean faltered to his third bogey in four rounds at the ninth to slip four back. After Karlsson bogeyed the eighth, Choi sank an 8-footer for birdie at 10 to get back within two.
Choi drained a long eagle putt on the 13th to grab a share of the lead. However, Karlsson sank a 6-foot birdie putt on the same hole to reclaim the lead at 17 under. Choi stumbled to bogeys on 16 and 18 to drop back to minus-14.
Jimenez had an up and down front nine with three bogeys and three birdies. He started to make his charge at the par-3 12th.
The Spaniard nearly aced the 12th, but settled for a tap-in birdie that moved him to 13-under. Jimenez almost holed his second to the par-5 13th.
His second rolled by the edge of the cup before stopping 12 feet from the hole. Jimenez drained the eagle putt to get within two as Karlsson made birdie.
'After the eagle on 13, I knew I was getting closer,' Jimenez admitted.
After a par on 14, Karlsson three-putted for bogey at 15 to slip to 16 under. Jimenez birdied the 16th from 12 feet out to grab a share of the lead. Both players parred the 17th to set up the dramatic conclusion on 18.
Trevor Immelman fired a 3-under 67 to move into a share of seventh at 10-under-par 270. He was joined there by Jarmo Sandelin, Gary Simpson, Daniel Chopra and Marcus Fraser.
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