Harrington sees off Singh in playoff win

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The Independent Online

Ireland's Padraig Harrington beat Fiji's Vijay Singh on the second sudden-death playoff hole to win the Honda Classic in Florida last night for his first career USPGA Tour title.

Ireland's Padraig Harrington beat Fiji's Vijay Singh on the second sudden-death playoff hole to win the Honda Classic in Florida last night for his first career USPGA Tour title.

Runner-up three-times in PGA events, Harrington finally won a tournament in the US when he holed a four-foot putt for par on the 18th and Singh missed a two-footer to hand the Irishman victory.

"I thought it was a gimme," Harrington, the world number eight, said of Singh's missed putt at the Country Club at Mirasol Palm Beach Gardens.

Singh, Harrington and American Joe Ogilvie all staged dramatic final-day rallies to rocket up the leaderboard and force a three-way playoff after completing 72 holes on the Sunrise course with 14-under 274 totals. Harrington carded his best round on the American Tour by two strokes as he fired a nine-under 63 while Singh, who surrendered the world number one ranking to Tiger Woods last week at the Doral Open, carded an eight-under 64.

Ogilvie, beaten by Singh in a playoff at the HP Classic in New Orleans, was eliminated on the first hole of the playoff after finding the fairway bunker with his opening drive.

At the Qatar Masters, Ernie Els, who was six shots behind with 15 holes remaining, produced the lowest round of the event yesterday - a sparkling seven-under-par 65 - to pip Sweden's Henrik Stenson by one shot. The dramatic victory followed Els's success in the Dubai Desert Classic last week.

The South African, who had been down in 81st place after an opening 73, became the first player to win back-to-back titles on the European tour since Singh in 2001.

In Dubai, Els had rolled in an 18-foot eagle putt on the final green to snatch victory. This time a two-putt birdie on the last won him the trophy, although there was a long wait before he could celebrate. Stenson and the Australian Richard Green would have forced a play-off with an eagle but it proved beyond both of them.

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