Shane Lowry emulated 2014 winner Rory McIlroy to continue the trend of Irish winners in the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational with a sensational two-stroke victory over Bubba Watson that saw him catapult from 27th place to fourth in The Race to Dubai rankings.
The 28 year old, whose last win came at the 2012 Portugal Masters, closed with 66 for an 11 under par wining total of 269 at Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio.
Wow! Can’t put into words how I’m feeling now. Thanks to everyone for their support. #winnerwinner
— Shane Lowry (@ShaneLowryGolf) August 9, 2015
He bagged 1,412,759 Race to Dubai points for the biggest victory of his career to take his total for the season to 2,104,984 – 770,660 behind leader McIlroy who will return to action in this week’s US PGA Championship.
“It doesn’t get any better than that, does it? To be honest, it hasn’t sunk in yet,” said Lowry who held off the challenges of overnight leaders Justin Rose and Jim Furyk, as well as Watson – all three of them Major champions – to become the first non-PGA Tour member to win the prestigious event since Martin Kaymer in 2011.
“I said at the start of the week, I’d take eight under par, and I thought that might win. So to shoot 11 under par on this golf course just shows a lot about my game, that it’s good enough to compete at any level.”
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It was a great week for European Tour players all round with Rose finishing in a share of third place alongside Furyk to claim 422,928 points and move up a place to fifth in The Race to Dubai with 1,796,042.
Reigning DP World Tour Championship, Dubai champion Henrik Stenson moved up from 16th to 10th in The Race to Dubai (1,109,213 points) while Brooks Koepka moved from 31st to 24th(823,523 points) as the pair each finished in a share of sixth place.
Denmark’s Soren Kjeldsen, winner of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open in May, produced another assured performance to finish three under par in a share of 12th place to move up two places to 18th in the rankings with 944,124 points, while Patrick Reed finished in a share of 15th place at two under par to claim 98,083 points which takes his Race to Dubai total to 597,486 (37th place) and should secure his DP World Tour Championship spot.
Graeme McDowell, Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, Danny Willet and Branden Grace all enjoyed top 20 finishes after ending the tournament one under par in a share of 17th place.
Already assured of his fourth appearance in the season-ending DP World Tour Championship, taking place at Jumeirah Golf Estates from November 19-22, Lowry will be looking to improve on last year’s impressive fifth place finish when The Race to Dubai reaches its climax in 100 days time.
General admission for the DP World Tour Championship is free of charge and can be obtained by registering online at www.DPWorldTourChampionship.com. Those who register will also be placed into a prize draw with the chance to win a VIP Hospitality package for the Championship Chalet.
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