Ernie betters Bjorn

Posted: Monday, October 20, 2003

VIRGINIA WATER, England Ernie Els won a record-tying fifth World Match Play title Sunday, defeating Thomas Bjorn 4 and 3.

The South African was three holes ahead after the first 18 and held on during the second 18 on the West Course at Wentworth despite a late hole in one by Bjorn.

Els won $1.67 million and joined Gary Player and Seve Ballesteros as five-time winners. Els, the European money title winner with two events left, also won the event from 1994-96 and last season.

Bjorn made his ace with a 4-iron on the 179-yard 14th, the 32nd overall, and was awarded a $62,000 car for the shot.

The Dane raised his arms in response to the applause and gestured to Els to match his shot. But the hole in one postponed the inevitable, with Bjorn four holes down with four to play.

Chrysler Classic of Greensboro

GREENSBORO, N.C. Shigeki Maruyama won his third PGA Tour event in as many years, shooting a final-round 67 at the Chrysler Classic of Greensboro to beat Brad Faxon by five shots.

The 5-foot-7 Japanese golfer started the day at 17 under and leading Faxon by three.

Maruyama closed out playing partner Faxon with an up-and-down birdie from the sand on the par-5, 15th hole, grabbing a four-stroke lead with four holes left at Forest Oaks Country Club.

Maruyama, who was 5 under Sunday, also had rounds of 65, 64 and 70 for a 22 under total, coming within one shot of the tournament record of 265, set by Jesper Parnevik in 1999.

Faxon shot a 69 and has gone 73 tournaments since winning the 2001 Sony Open. This was his fifth runner-up finish in that time frame.

Matt Gogel, who made just 13 of 25 cuts this season, was third after a 68. His 15 under total was two behind Faxon and his best finish in 2003.

Champions Tour

SAN ANTONIO Craig Stadler won his third Champions Tour event of the year, shooting a 4-under 67 for a four-stroke victory over Bob Gilder at the $1.5 million SBC Championship

Stadler finished at 15-under 198, and his four-stroke margin was the largest in tournament history. He also won the Ford Senior Players Championship and the Greater Hickory Classic. In July, Stadler won the B.C. Open on the PGA Tour.

Macau Open

MACAU Colin Montgomerie won his first title of the year, defeating Australia's Scott Barr on the first playoff hole at the Macau Open.

Mallorca Classic

PULA, Balearic Islands Miguel Angel Jimenez shot a 5-under-par 65 and won the Mallorca Classic by a stroke as Jose Maria Olazabal double-bogeyed the 17th hole and bogeyed the 18th.

Nationwide Tour

MIDLAND, Texas D.J. Brigman won his first Nationwide Tour title, shooting a 6-under-par 66 for a one-stroke victory over three players at the Permian Basin Classic.

Brigman, a former University of New Mexico player, finished the tournament with a 16-under-par 272 at the Midland Country Club course.

He earned a career-high $81,000, moving from 85th to 31st on the money list, and guaranteed himself a spot in the season-ending Tour Championship coming up in two weeks.

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