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Parry Prevails in New Zealand

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Craig Parry gave himself a belated birthday present Sunday, winning the New Zealand Open when Michael Campbell inexplicably double-bogeyed the 71st hole.
 
Parry, who turned 36 Saturday, shot a 3-under 68 to finish at 11-under-par 273. Campbell was also at 11-under through 16 holes, but three-putted from six feet at the par-4 17th. The 2000 champion needed to eagle the par-5 finishing hole to force a playoff. But after reaching the green in two shots, he narrowly missed his 15-foot effort.
 
The Australian collected $77,000 for his 11th career Australasian Tour title.
 
Its been a while since Ive won, Parry said to the New Zealand fans. I know you were barracking (cheering) for the Kiwis, but I just happened to play a little bit better than them today. I know thats going to come back and haunt me now. Michael and the boys and Steve have won enough over in Australia, so I thought wed better get one back.
 
Campbell (69) finished tied for second with Stephen Leaney (71) and Steve Alker (71). Leaney and Alker could also have each eagled the home hole to force an extra session, but, like Campbell, came away with birdies.
 
Tiger Woods never factored in the final round. Starting the round seven shots back, he hit his tee shot 370 yards at the 400-yard par-4 first, but had to settle for a par. He then three-putted from four feet for a double bogey at the par-4 second.
 
Woods, who received a $2 million appearance fee, birdied Nos. 6, 7 and 10, and eagled the par-5 12th to get within four shots of the lead at 5-under. However, a bogey at the par-4 13th thwarted his momentum.
 
Woods rolled in a 15-foot birdie putt at the last to shoot 2-under 69 and finish the event at 5-under-par, tied for sixth.
 
'I hit the ball well all week, but I didn't get anything out of the greens,' Woods said. 'It was a tough week, but I was happy with my ball-striking in this wind.'
 
Due to a three-hour 20-minute rain delay Saturday, 14 players were forced to complete their third rounds Sunday morning.
 
Leaney birdied the par-5 18th to take a one-shot lead at 10-under into the final round, and, following another hour-long rain delay, birdied the first hole to increase his lead to two strokes.
 
That proved to be the largest difference between first and second place throughout the final 18 holes of competition.
 
Leaney bogeyed the third, fourth and sixth holes to fall to 8-under, but birdied the par-4 11th to reclaim a share of the lead with Parry and Alker at minus-9. It then became a four-way tie at the top when Campbell birdied the par-5 11th.
 
Parry broke the deadlock, sinking an eight-foot birdie putt at No. 13, but was caught a couple of holes later by Campbell. The Kiwis approach shot on the par-4 15th bounced off a mound back of the green and rolled 15 feet from the hole. He then sunk the subsequent putt to also move to 10-under.
 
Campbell passed Parry with another 15-foot birdie at No. 16, but found trouble on the next hole when his approach shot landed in the greenside grandstand. Campbell was awarded a free drop and pitched to six feet, from where he missed the par save.
 
Amazingly, he then missed the two-foot bogey putt.
 
It was Parry who now led by a shot at 10-under; he quickly moved two clear with a routine two-putt birdie at the par-5 18th.
 
Campbell had one last chance to redeem himself. He hit a 3-wood from 225 yards to within 15 feet of the flagstick on the final hole, but was unable to convert the playoff-forcing putt.
 
Full-field scores from the New Zealand Open