Jacobson Outlasts Rodiles for Win

By Sports NetworkNovember 2, 2003, 5:00 pm
CADIZ, Spain -- Fredrik Jacobson of Sweden parred the fourth extra hole Sunday to defeat Spain's Carlos Rodiles in a playoff and win the season-ending Volvo Masters Andalucia.
 
The pair played the par-4 18th for the fifth time on Sunday after they completed their third round in the morning. Rodiles drove into the trees right while Jacobson split the fairway with his tee ball. Jacobson's second landed seven feet from the cup and forced Rodiles to attempt a miracle shot out of the trees, which struck a tree and landed in the fairway. Rodiles played his third 30 feet from the green and he missed his par-saving putt, leaving Jacobson two putts for the win.
 
He took both and earned his third title of the 2003 season and his third on the European Tour.
 
'He played fantastic all the way through,' said Jacobson, referring to his opponent. 'It was a great fight. It's been a battle I've never seen. It was a roller coaster at the same time.'
 
This year's playoff was eerily reminiscent of last year's event when Colin Montgomerie and Bernhard Langer were tied after regulation. The tandem played two extra holes when it became too dark and they decided to share the title.
 
Nothing like that was needed on Sunday although the waning light would probably not have allowed another hole.
 
The pair were tied for the third-round lead after the round was completed Sunday morning. All of Friday's action was wiped out thanks to rain and heavy winds so the pair finished the third round and turned around and went back out to play the final 18.
 
The duo shot matching rounds of 2-under 70 to finish regulation knotted at 12-under-par 276. It looked like Rodiles was on the way to the winner's circle late in Sunday's final round but things took a turn.
 
The pair were tied at 13 under par at the 16th tee but Rodiles drove into the left trees and left with bogey to fall one down. At the famed par-5 17th, Jacobson laid up from the left trees into the right rough. His third landed on the putting surface but spun back into the water. He left with a double-bogey and Rodiles drained a six-footer for birdie to take a two-shot lead on the 72nd hole.
 
Rodiles drove into the left rough and bounced on a cart path. He tried to play a right-to-left shot out of the tall grass but put too much action on the ball and it landed in the left rough, short of the green.
 
Jacobson applied the pressure when he stiffed his second shot to two feet. Rodiles' third went through the putting surface on to the fringe behind the green and he missed his par putt. He tapped in for bogey and Jacobson did the same for birdie and it was back to No. 18 for the playoff.
 
Rodiles, who was competing in his first extra session on the European Tour, had the advantage off the tee when he drove into the fairway. Jacobson hit into the trees on the left and played his second through the green. Rodiles took command with his approach landing 10 feet from the hole but Jacobson put on some heat when he chipped to three feet. Rodiles' birdie try shaved the hole and Jacobson sank his par putt to extend the sudden-death playoff.
 
The duo were back on the 18th tee and both hit good drives. Jacobson pulled his second left of the green, while Rodiles' ball came to rest 20 feet from the stick. Jacobson chipped four feet short but Rodiles missed another opportunity to win outright. Both holed their par putts and were off to the 10th.
 
Rodiles landed in the first cut of rough on the right and Jacobson drove dangerously close to water on the right side. The Swede quickly played his second and did well to hit the green while Rodiles hit another solid approach pin-high on the right side. Jacobson's putt never threatened the hole and Rodiles had another chance at victory but that putt also slid by the hole.
 
Rodiles' luck ran out when they returned to the 18th and Jacobson joined Order of Merit winner Ernie Els as the only players to win more than two events on the European Tour this season.
 
'What a great way to finish,' said Jacobson, who became the first Swede to win three times in one season on the European Tour. 'Things just happened these last two days that I didn't think we're possible.'
 
Brian Davis fired a final-round, 6-under 66 to finish in third at 9-under-par 279. John Bickerton shot a 69 on Sunday and took fourth at minus-6.
 
Stephen Leaney (68) and Greg Owen (71) shared sixth place at 4-under-par 284. Michael Campbell (68) and Sergio Garcia (71) tied for seventh at minus- 2, followed by Ian Poulter, who finished alone in ninth at 1-under-par 287.
 
This event marked Montgomerie's last chance at a win on the European Tour in 2003. He shot a 1-over 73 and tied for 10th with two-time Masters champion Jose Maria Olazabal and young Australian Adam Scott. The trio finished at even-par 288 and Montgomerie failed to pick up a tour win for the first time since 1992.
 
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