Morikawa Rules European Tour Capturing DP World & Become First USA-Born No. 1.

…. by Fatiha Betscher in Dubai 

Collin Morikawa has created history not only capturing the DP World Tour Championship but becoming the first American-born full tour member in the 49-history of the European Tour to be crowned No. 1.

Morikawa produced a sizzling closing seven holes coming from near outside the top-10 through 11 holes to produce a round of 66 and in the end comfortable win by three shots at 17-under par in continuing heatwave conditons on the Earth Course at Jumeirah Estates.

It is the reigning Open Champion’s first ‘regular’ European Tour success, his third victory in 2021 and his sixth overall as a professional.

Though it was not as easy for the 24-year old Morikawa as it would seem with England’s Matthew Fitzpatrick being predicted to win the coveted No. 1 crown when he raced to seven-under par through 15 holes and Morikawa still to ignite his charge to the top.  Though such talk ended when Fitzpatrick bogeyed 15 and 16 on route also to a closing 66 and take second place at 14-under par.

“It feels so good. I would be lying to you if I said I wasn’t watching what Matt Fitzpatrick was doing today. Boy, did he put on a run. Props to him. Made a lot of birdies early on,” said an emotional Morikawa.

“But it’s 18 holes. All I needed to do was catch a spark. I feel great right now. Winning the DP World Tour Championship, coming here last year, my first time to Dubai, really special.

“I started off with six pars, especially with some birdie holes, wasn’t fun. I felt hike I was hit something good shots and I wasn’t getting the breaks I needed. The putts weren’t dropping and I just told myself when I looked at the leaderboard after nine that I was still in there and I was still two or three back at that point and I just needed one spark.

“After parring 10 and 11, after I told myself, you shouldn’t have done that; I knew something had to change. And 12, got a great break, thinning my second shot, made the putt, and that got the momentum started”.

With his wins at Royal St George’s Golf Club, the WGC-Workday Championship at The Concession and in the UAE, the World Number Two becomes just the the second player ever to win a Major Championship, a WGC title, a Rolex Series title and the Race to Dubai after Francesco Molinari, and the first to win them all in the same season.

“I’m still not number one in the world. I still have a lot to work on in my game,” he said.

“Obviously this week was good. I still thought I wasn’t playing amazing but I made do. I was able to make some putts here and there, hit some great chip shots, made up-and-down and made some crucial par saves out here and that’s what you need”.

Dane Nicolai Højgaard and Scot Robert MacIntyre finished at 13 under, a shot clear of South African Dean Burmester, Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy and England’s Ian Poulter.

McIlroy, a two time winner of this event, had led for most of the day but dropped three shots in his final four holes to sign for a 74.

COLLIN MORIKAWA – WITH HIS 2021 DP WORLD TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP WIN

  • It is fourth European Tour victory in his 17 th appearance
  • It is his third European Tour victory on 2021 following the WGC – Workday Championship at the Concession and The Open Championship
  • His first victory in a Rolex Series event
  • His first victory in the DP World Tour Championship in his second appearance in the tournament. He finished tied 2010 in 2020.
  • Becomes the first American winner of the Race to Dubai with a final total of 5,856 points
  • Remains second on the Official World Golf Ranking behind Jon Rahm
  • Morikawa’s win is the fourth victory by an American on the 2021 Race to Dubai following his own victory at The Open, Johannes Veerman (D+D REAL Czech Masters) and Billy Horschel (BMW PGA Championship)

 

 

 

 



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