CASARES, Spain – Anthony Kim advanced tothe semifinals of the World Match Play Championship to play Robert Allenby, despite losing to Scott Strange by three holes on Friday.
Strange needed to beat Kim by at least four holes to advance and was 4 up going into the 568-yard par-5 18th, when the American player responded by hitting his second shot to within 4 feet. Strange, who had laid up, put his approach into the bunker before conceding the hole.
Kim finished with an aggregate of plus-4 holes to Strange’s plus-3 after three Group A matches.
Allenby beat Oliver Wilson of England by three holes to set up a Presidents Cup rematch, where Kim won easily. Kim made bigger headlines then after being called a loose cannon by Allenby for reportedly being spotted drunk only hours before teeing off.
“I’m going to be in bed by 9:30,” Kim said Friday.
Former Masters champion Angel Cabrera also reached the semifinals after easily beating Simon Dyson of England in Group C.
Kim, who won both of his matches Friday, quickly found himself in a tough position against his Australian opponent.
“It was pretty tough to hang in there because I was 3 under after eight but 3 down,” Kim said. “I knew I just had to hang in there.”
Struggling on the greens, Kim eventually cut the deficit to two holes by No. 12, after Strange three-putted from the fringe. He then lost three of the next five holes before hitting that clutch shot.
“Being aggressive suits (my style), but sometimes it can be your Achilles’ heel,” Kim said. “Every once in a while I get that itch and I go for it.”
Allenby, who was the only unbeaten player to advance, didn’t want to talk about what happened with Kim at the Presidents Cup.
“Obviously, he kicked my (butt) there. It’s all said and done,” Allenby said.
Two-time U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen beat Paul Casey by a hole, and Sergio Garcia was a five-hole winner over Martin Kaymer in matches where no player could advance.