Golf: Grumpy Tiger lets Campbell pounce

AT LAST the Tiger is looking human again. Having won his last four tournaments, he had every hope of lifting a fifth in the Johnnie Walker Classic in Taiwan.

But Tiger Woods was forced to give way to the New Zealander Michael Campbell after a disastrous front nine yesterday which included two sevens.

The world's No 1 golfer marched off the course with a scowl on his face, having finished sixth.

The reason for his loss required little explanation. Woods faltered because of poor putting all week, a near meltdown yesterday, and the solid play of Kiwi Campbell.

The New Zealander refused to choke, as Ernie Els did last year, when Woods made a spectacular comeback at the Classic to beat Els in a play- off.

Campbell, who won $215,330 (pounds 135,000), shot a 70 and finished 12-below par, while Geoff Ogilvy of Australia came in second at 11-under. Els of South Africa finished third with a score of 10-under.

Dogged by uninspired putting, Woods was down four strokes going into the final round on a day of bright sunshine and light winds at the Ta Shee Golf and Country Club. Then came the problems.

First, Woods hooked his drive on the sixth hole into the rough and down a gully beside a hedge, an impossible lie that forced him to take a stroke.

"I want all these people out of here," a grumpy Woods told marshals as he charged through the gallery to find his ball. Woods ended up with a double-bogey on the hole, but things became worse only two holes later.

On the eighth, Woods drove into the rough, hit his recovery shot into the water and required three putts, giving him a disastrous triple-bogey.

Campbell's win ended a four-year losing streak for the New Zealander. He moved into the lead on Friday and kept it.

Campbell had not won a tournament since 1995 and finished so poorly in 1996 and 1997 that he did not dare dream of winning again and even considered leaving the game.

"It's just unbelievable. It's been a long frustrating last four years and finally the monkey's off my back," he said.

Though Campbell's approaches and putts were strikingly consistent, his victory never seemed assured until the last few holes.

He has played well in tournaments before, only to finish poorly. He birdied the first two holes, then pocketed another birdie on hole six. But on the seventh hole, the 30-year-old Campbell found himself in a sand trap and took three shots to escape, chalking up a double bogey for the hole. "That was my disaster hole," he said.

With Els and Ogilvy in hot pursuit, Campbell was in a three-way tie for the lead on the 14th hole. Subsequent bogeys by the other two, though, paved the way for victory.

Woods remains the man to beat in golf, Campbell said. "Tiger, he's a freak of nature. I mean, Tiger is so phenomenal it's frightening. The only way we can defeat Tiger is for him to make mistakes," Campbell said.

Ogilvy sank a birdie putt on the 18th hole to finish at 68. "Initially, I was disappointed, I felt I played good enough to maybe have a chance to win," said the 22-year-old from Melbourne.

Els, who won the Classic in 1997, when it was held in Thailand, finished with a 68. The difficult 16th hole bedevilled Els all week, and he bogeyed there again yesterday having double bogeyed the hole the day before. "I guess the 16th (hole) screwed me this week... yesterday I said it was a ridiculous hole and I still say that," Els said.

Vijay Singh notched up a solid round of 68 to finish at 9-under par, followed by the Australian Peter Senior at 8-under par.

At the Taiheiyo Masters in Gotemba, Japan, Britain's Darren Clarke lost to Japan's Hirofumi Miyase on the second play-off hole yesterday. Miyase, starting the day two strokes off the pace, birdied the final hole to force a three-way play-off against Japan's Ryoken Kawagishi and Clarke.

Kawagishi, the overnight leader, bowed out on the first play-off hole and Clarke then missed a par putt on the second hole to surrender victory to Miyase.

Scores, page 11

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Sheeran arrives at the 56th annual Grammy Awards earlier this year
musicYes, that would be Ed Sheeran, according to the BBC
Arts and Entertainment
AKB48 perform during one of their daily concerts at Tokyo’s Akihabara theatre
musicJapan's AKB48 are one of the world’s most-successful pop acts
News
Ian Thorpe has thanked his supporters after the athlete said in an interview that he is gay
people
News
The headstone of jazz great Miles Davis at Woodlawn Cemetery in New York
news
Arts and Entertainment
Brendan O'Carroll has brought out his female alter-ego Agnes Brown for Mrs Brown's Boys D'Movie
filmComedy holds its place at top of the UK box office
News
newsBear sweltering in zoo that reaches temperatures of 40 degrees
Arts and Entertainment
Professor Kathy Willis will showcase plants from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew
radioPlants: From Roots to Riches has been two years in the making
Arts and Entertainment
TV The follow-up documentary that has got locals worried
Arts and Entertainment
Eminem's daughter Hailie has graduated from high school
music
Arts and Entertainment
Original Netflix series such as Orange Is The New Black are to benefit from a 'substantial' increase in investment
TVHoax announcement had caused outrage
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

News
One Direction star Harry Styles who says he has no plans to follow his pal Cara Delevingne down the catwalk.
peopleManagement confirms rumours singer is going it alone are false
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Dynamics CRM Developer (C#, .NET, Dynamics CRM 2011/2013)

£40000 - £60000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Dynamics CRM D...

Web Developer (C#, ASP.NET, AJAX, JavaScript, MVC, HTML)

£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Web Developer ...

C# R&D .NET Developer-Algorithms, WCF, WPF, Agile, ASP.NET,MVC

£50000 - £67000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# R&D .NE...

C# Developer (Web, HTML5, CSS3, ASP.NET, JS, Visual Studios)

£40000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...

Day In a Page

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream as Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream

Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil
Saharan remains may be evidence of the first race war, 13,000 years ago

The first race war, 13,000 years ago?

Saharan remains may be evidence of oldest large-scale armed conflict
Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Researchers hope eye tests can spot ‘biomarkers’ of the disease
Sex, controversy and schoolgirl schtick

Meet Japan's AKB48

Pop, sex and schoolgirl schtick make for controversial success
Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor