23 Sep 19
Danny Willett, the major winner who was put on the road to golfing fame and fortune by PGA Master Professional Peter Ball, has won the European Tour’s flagship tournament, the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth.
Willett, whose talents were spotted and nurtured by Ball when he was a teenager, won the US Masters at Augusta in 2016.
A dip in form followed but he has bounced back to win two Rolex Series Events in successive seasons, the second of which came at Wentworth when he repelled the challenge of Spain’s Jon Rahm.
Willett was locked in a tense battle with the determined Spaniard all weekend and there were turning points aplenty – but none more so than at the 11th.
Having entered the final round tied for the lead, Willett had pulled two clear through ten holes courtesy of four birdies – to Rahm’s two – but found himself in some trouble with his second and third shots at the par four 11th, leaving himself with a monster putt for bogey.
He duly drained it for a five, though, with one of his many masterful escapes this week at the Surrey venue, and thereafter the wind was taken from Rahm’s sails - the 24-year-old bogeyed two of the following three holes with a birdie in between.
Willett, who won the final Rolex Series event of the 2018 season – the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai - closed out a deserved three-stroke victory with birdies at the two closing par fives for a five-under-par round of 67 to finish on 20-under for the tournament.
Meanwhile, Robert Coles warmed up for his forthcoming assignment in Great Britain and Ireland’s PGA Cup team by being the leading PGA Professional at Wentworth.
Coles was one of four PGA pros to qualify for the tournament and, to mark his achievement, he was presented with a silver salver by PGA captain Peter Hanna prior to flying out to Austin, Texas, to play in the PGA Cup later this week.
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