Wed, Nov 24, 2004 - Page 20 News List

Casey, Donald win World Cup of Golf for England


England's Luke Donald, right, and Paul Casey hold up their trophy after winning the World Cup Golf Championships on Sunday.


A magnificent display of precision putting from Paul Casey brought England only their second ever World Cup win on Sunday and spoiled the party for home favorites Spain.

Casey and his partner Luke Donald were in a dogfight with Sergio Garcia and Miguel Angel Jimenez for the sport's top multi-nation team title as they reached the turn in the closing foursomes.

That was when the Ryder Cup star produced three crucial birdie putts in a row from the 10th, two from 25 feet and one from 12 feet, to propel his team into a four-stroke lead.

Spain hit back with an eagle at the 13th, but Garcia fatefully went into the water with a risky second to the par-five 16th putting the Spaniards three back.

Even so Casey's grit on the greens was called upon as he needed to sink a three-footer at the last to clinch the win with a bogey five after Spain had birdied.

He did so and he and Donald became only the second English pair in the event's 51-year history to go all the way after Nick Faldo and David Carter in Auckland in 1998.

They finished at 257, 31 under par, after a closing 64 and were one stroke clear of Garcia and Jimenez, who closed with a 66 and three ahead of Ireland's Padraig Harrington and Paul McGinley who came in with a 65.

Reigning champions Trevor Immelman and Rory Sabbatini of South Africa were fourth, a further three strokes back after a final round 68.

"Paul got hot today with his putter and that was the difference," said Donald, who said that he and Casey had drawn inspiration from an e-mail he received from a friend who pointed out that almost a year ago to the day England won the rugby World Cup in Australia.

"Our games are so different but that has its benefits in foursomes," he said.

"I am a very straight hitter and hit a lot of greens, while Paul is a long hitter and a great putter," he said.

Casey, who has gone from fifth place to third to second to win in his four World Cups to date, said that the quality of their score was shown by the fact that they scored better in the foursomes than in the Saturday fourballs.

Garcia said that it had been a towering performance from the English.

"We shot six under par and it wasn't good enough. It was a flipping good score, but it's still disappointing. At least we made them win it. It was gutsy. Paul got up there at the last and it was straight in the middle," Garcia said.

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