Dubai Desert Classic: Sergio Garcia completes wire-to-wire victory


The 37-year-old carded a bogey-free three-under-par 69 to finish on 19 under, three shots ahead of Open champion Henrik Stenson.


England’s Tyrrell Hatton was tied for third on 14 under, two shots ahead of compatriot Matthew Fitzpatrick.


“Hopefully it will be the beginning of a great year,” Garcia said.


The victory at Emirates Golf Club will move Garcia back into the top 10 in the world rankings, from his current position of 15th.


Garcia entered the final round with a three-shot lead and managed to save par on the eighth, despite landing his tee shot in the desert.


Back-to-back birdies from Stenson on the 13th and 14th applied some pressure before the Swede bogeyed the 15th, while Garcia produced a stunning tee-shot on the 15th and a brilliant up-and-down on the next to ease to victory.


“It was tough,” said Garcia, who claimed his first win since the 2014 Commercial Bank Qatar Masters and his 12th career European Tour title.


“Even without playing his best, he [Stenson] is still always there. I am very happy with the way I played and the way I handled key moments.


“I stayed aggressive and positive. To be back inside the world’s top 10 is great.”


England’s Ian Poulter, who had started the day in third place on 11 under, hit six bogeys in his round for a four-over par 76, to drop back to seven under.

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