Golf: Woosnam completes rare treble

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The Independent Online
IAN WOOSNAM became the first player to win a European title in three successive years since 1956, when he took the Monte Carlo Open after a marathon final round yesterday. Because of low cloud on the 3,000ft-high Mont Agel course, it took the Welshman over six hours to shoot a closing 64, giving him a two-stroke victory over Sweden's Johan Rystrom, who had a 60, and Zimbabwe's Mark McNulty.

The last player to complete a treble in the same event was Australia's Peter Thomson, in The Open in 1954-56. 'I'm glad it's all over,' Woosnam said. 'I knew it was a long time since anybody did three in a row - I felt the pressure.

'I'm glad to have concentrated as well as I did and I putted very well. Now I've got the confidence to start attacking in preparation for The Open.'

Rystrom missed Europe's first round of 59 in history by an inch. Needing to birdie the 312 yards last, he pitched to 12ft. His putt rolled up gently to the edge of the hole, but instead of dropping in trickled round the back. 'Maybe I'll get another chance to win a tournament, but I might never get another chance to score 59 and that's all I was thinking about,' he said.

MONTE CARLO OPEN (Mont Agel) Leading final scores (GB or Irl unless stated): 261 I Woosnam 66 65 66 64. 263 J Rystrom (Swe) 70 64 69 60; M McNulty (Zim) 67 67 66 63. 264 D Clarke 66 60 73 65. 266 E Romero (Arg) 67 66 65 68. 269 A Forsbrand (Swe) 73 67 65 64; J Sewell 67 68 68 66; P McGinley 65 66 69 69. 270 S Little 72 67 68 63; C Rocca (It) 64 71 67 68. 271 J van de Velde (Fr) 71 67 65 68; D Smyth 72 67 64 68; M A Jimenez (Sp) 67 68 67 69; E O'Connell 70 66 64 71. 272 Y Kuramoto (Jap) 68 71 70 63; M Mackenzie 71 66 71 64; M Gates 74 63 69 66; R Boxall 74 62 69 67; P-U Johansson (Swe) 68 65 70 69; P Walton 68 66 69 69; P Mitchell 68 65 70 69. 273 P Senior (Aus) 67 66 73 67; M Sunesson (Swe) 73 65 67 68; S Tinning (Den) 74 64 66 69; T Johnstone (Zim) 71 66 67 69; T Levet (Fr) 69 70 65 69. 274 L Tinkler (Aus) 73 66 69 66; G Watine (Fr) 70 69 69 66; S Ballesteros (Sp) 70 69 67 68, R Gonzalez (Arg) 71 62 71 70.

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