Golf: Edwards celebrates end of a losing run: Langer slips in Heritage Classic

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The Independent Online
THE BEST birthday present David Edwards received yesterday was the one he gave himself, a two-shot victory over South African David Frost in the Heritage Classic. For Edwards, 37 yesterday, it was the third win in a 15-year career.

Although he has not won often, the venues for his victories are all impressive. He has won at Riviera CC, Muirfield Village and now at the Harbour Town golf links. Edwards began the round tied for the lead at nine under par with Paul Azinger and Frost.

Frost had taken the early lead with a front nine 33 to go to 12 under par, two shots ahead of Edwards, who turned in 35, and four in front of Azinger. Edwards tied Frost at 12 under after birdies on the 10th and 11th, but then had a two-shot lead by himself after Frost had a double-bogey at the 12th hole.

Playing behind Frost, Edwards ran into trouble of his own on the par- four 12th. After missing the fairway, Edwards left his second shot short of the green, then pitched his third 30 feet past the flagstick, taking two putts for a bogey and reducing his lead to just one stroke.

Edwards' lead was back to three shots after a birdie at the 13th while Frost had a bogey at the 14th. Edwards' three-shot lead was once again reduced to just one after Edwards bogeyed the 14th and Frost seconds later birdied the 15th. Edwards also birdied the 15th, but then gave a shot back when he went into a waste area off the tee on 16. Frost could not capitalise on the opportunity offered him by Edwards, and missed a short birdie putt on the 17th, and then hit his drive through the fairway into the marsh at the last hole, finishing with a bogey and second place money.

Bernhard Langer failed to repeat his 1985 feat of back-to-back Masters and Heritage victories. Langer had shared the lead after 36 holes, but played very badly on Saturday, and his third round score of 74 left him four shots back when the final round began. He finished with a one-over final round of 72.

HERITAGE CLASSIC (Hilton Head Island, S Carolina): Leading final scores (US unless noted): 275 David Frost (South Africa) 67 67 70 71 277 Ian Baker-Finch (Australia) 68 70 69 70; Fuzzy Zoeller 70 69 68 70; Don Pooley 67 70 70 70; Mark McCumber 68 68 70 71; Paul Azinger 70 68 66 73. 278 Gil Morgan 71 72 69 66; Tom Lehman 70 70 70 68; Steve Pate 71 67 68 72; John Cook 69 67 69 73. 279 Bob Estes 68 67 75 69; Jeff Sluman 68 69 70 72; Lanny Wadkins 66 70 70 73; Jodie Mudd 69 68 69 73.

Jean van de Velde capitalised on Jamie Spence's misfortune when he became the first Frenchman to win a European title for 24 years yesterday. Van de Velde, 26, beat Greg Turner of New Zealand at the third hole of a play-off to capture the Rome Masters Spence, who shared the lead after 54 holes, was disqualified for signing for a wrong score after taking an incorrect drop and being penalised two strokes. .

ROME MASTERS TOURNAMENT (Castelgandolfo) Leading final scores (GB or Irl unless stated): 281 J van de Velde (Fr) 66 76 67 72 (Van de Velde won at third hole of play-off); G Turner (NZ) 72 68 70 71. 282 C Rocca (It) 68 68 74 72. 283 D Basson (SA) 75 71 68 69. 284 D Smyth 74 67 73 70; F Nobilo (NZ) 68 73 73 70; B Lane 69 71 72 72. 285 D Gilford 73 73 70 69; G Orr 73 72 68 72. 286 A Binaghi (It) 70 71 75 70; P Fowler (Aus) 71 74 70 71; U Zilg (Ger) 76 67 71 72; M Besanceney (Fr) 69 73 71 73; J Robinson 70 71 69 76.

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