Scott catches second wind to hold off Goosen's surge

Adam Scott almost squandered a five-shot lead before winning the Johnnie Walker Classic yesterday, carding a closing 72 to secure his fifth European Tour title.

Adam Scott almost squandered a five-shot lead before winning the Johnnie Walker Classic yesterday, carding a closing 72 to secure his fifth European Tour title.

The 24-year-old Australian's 18-under-par total gave him a three-shot victory over the double US Open champion Retief Goosen, who recorded a 70.

Sweden's Henrik Stenson, New Zealand's Michael Campbell and South Africa's Richard Sterne shared third on 13 under. Colin Montgomerie, Ernie Els and Brett Rumford were a shot further back after closing rounds of 69.

Scott led from start to finish after an opening course-record 63, but after 10 holes of the final round his lead had been reduced to just one shot. Scott bogeyed the third hole of his final round and saw his lead slashed to two thanks to an early pair of birdies from Goosen.

But he recovered his composure and a two-putt birdie on the par-five 13th followed a beautiful shot to the 12th and with Goosen failing to match him, Scott could breathe easily.

"I must admit I was a little concerned after the 10th" he said. "I only had 50 yards to the hole and didn't get it to the green and my mind left me there for a while.

"My caddie geed me up on the 11th and told me to show them my best swing and on the 12th I hit a beautiful two iron which set me up with a good chance to win the tournament," added the world No 10. "It was tough in the wind but I did what I needed to do. I hung in there and I'm proud of myself for that."

Montgomerie bemoaned his form on the greens, despite recording his fifth top 10 finish in six events this season.

"I putted poorly," he said. "I left a couple of two-footers out there again, one for birdie and one for par. It's costing me shots. I've got to work on the putting but apart from the putting everything else is OK."

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