Parnevik overcomes Love and Mickelson in play-off

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The Independent Online

Jesper Parnevik claimed the Byron Nelson Classic here on Sunday night after seeing off Davis Love III and Phil Mickelson in a three-way play-off. The 35-year-old Swedish Ryder Cup player completed a par four at the third sudden-death hole to secure his fourth US PGA Tour win and his second of the season after his victory at the Bob Hope Classic.

After all three players had parred the first play-off hole, Mickelson was the first to drop out after his 10-foot birdie putt at the par-three 17th just lipped out. Love and Parnevik had already secured twos from 20 feet and four feet respectively. It was the first time the 29-year-old left-hander had not come out on top in four play-offs at US PGA Tour tournaments.

Love, who had only won one of his six previous play-offs, missed the fairway off the tee at the par-four 18th and chipped to eight feet after missing the green with his second. Parnevik, meanwhile, was 15 feet from the hole after his second shot and putted to within three feet with his third. Love's par putt scraped just to the left of the hole but Parnevik made no mistake with his effort.

"After the putt I missed on 12 [from a foot], I didn't think I would be in a playoff. It was so close all day, so many players were back and forth, and a lot of guys missed a lot of chances," Parnevik said. All three had finished on 11-under - Mickelson closing with a five-under-par 65, Parnevik a 66 and Love, who led going into the final day, a 69.

Tiger Woods equalled the best round of the tournament, a seven-under-par 63 - which Love and Mickelson had shot in the second round - to share fourth spot on 10-under. The world No 1 was happy to return to form after an opening-round 73 had put him in danger of missing the cut. "I was pretty pleased with the way I hung in there," Woods said. "I'm pleased to be back on track. I was a lot more comfortable with my swing and struck the ball beautifully."

John Huston, the joint third-round leader, also finished on 10-under after a 70. Sergio Garcia, the young Spaniard, could only manage a level-par 70 and slipped back to joint 15th on four-under, while Nick Faldo made some headway with a 68 to finish on one-over, which left him tied for 41st.

* Eight of this year's European Tour winners have confirmed they will take part in the inaugural Wales Open at Celtic Manor from 8 to 11 June. Gary Orr, Anthony Wall, Brian Davis, Jamie Spence, Rolf Muntz, Wei Yze Yeh, Lucas Parsons and Roger Chapman will compete for a £750,000 total prize fund over the Wentwood Hills course along with the Ryder Cup captain Sam Torrance and his predecessor Mark James.