THE UBS HONG KONG OPEN GETS A SURPRISE WINNER


Wade Ormsby, winning out of nowhere

Amazing Wade Ormsby overcame a one-shot deficit by closing with a two-under-par 68 to win the UBS Hong Kong Open on Sunday after entering the 4th round a shot behind SSP Chawrasia solid leader since the first day. When he turned in level-par 34, he was four behind the man from Calcutta who then triple-bogeyed the 9th to bring a host of players back into contention.

Getting ready for his approach shot to the 18th green, Ormsby held a two-shot lead as he stood on the 18th fairway at Hong Kong Golf Club. He played a conservative iron the fat part of the green, protecting his score instead of trying any foolish adventure with a direct hit to the flag over the pond, over a deep bunker. But the 37-year-old Australia now contemplating his first win on the European Tpur after 263 starts was far too shy on his first putt and really unsettled on the second missing the hole and putting a silly bogey on the leaderboard.
Rafa Cabrera Bello loses the title on the 72th hole

That left him in a tie with last year’s runner-up Rafa Cabrera Bello back at -11 after a successful long putt on the 17th. A bit too greedy, the fashionista Spaniard flew his 8-iron approach shot to the 18th greenside bunker. Failing to get up and down for par and a playoff, he handed the title to Ormsby who played his first season on the European Tour in 2004 after coming through the Q-School. He has done that four times since in a career that has also seen him struggle with injury at times.

A fifth-placed finish at the Andalucia Masters in October ensured he eventually kept his card in comfortable fashion last season, but nothing to compare with his exemption until 2020 after winning this fine UBS Hong Kong Open.

“It means a lot to me,” said a tearful Ormsby. “I’ve played a lot of golf in Europe, everywhere, and a few bumps along the way but it’s pretty cool to get a win this late in your career. I didn’t think it would take this long but first one’s always pretty special. I said at the start of last year, I want to play a Major and win a tournament before my career is done so I’ve done both those things this year. I’m really happy about that.”

What’s next on the agenda? The Australian PGA Championship on November 30th, but that day the world of golf attention might possibly focus on one man only, Tiger Woods for his long awaited return to tournament golf. PPH