Monday, May 24

Yes, He Khan: Journeyman Captures BMW PGA Championship

2010 BMW PGA Championship Recap
Winner: Simon Khan
Score: 6 under, 278 (72, 69, 71, 66)
Quote: “This means everything.”
Fact: Introduced to golf by grandfather.
Thought: Might be only player who likes new 18th hole.

SIMON KHAN LOST HIS TOUR card last year and wasn’t exactly setting European Tour courses ablaze thus far in the 2010 season. Khan’s best finish was a tie for 27th two weeks ago. Before that, the Englishman was sputtering along with finishes such as 56th, 93rd and 105th.

That all changed at Wentworth Club on Sunday when Khan posted a 5-under 66 to win the prestigious BMW PGA Championship by a shot over Fredrik Andersson Hed and Luke Donald, who stumbled with a double bogey at the 17th. A birdie and par on the last two holes, both par 5s, would have earned Donald the title. He shrugged it off afterward. Still, it must sting, right? Luke?

Meanwhile, Khan, a mostly invisible player of late (he was a last-minute entry at Wentworth), rolled in a 20-foot birdie putt on the 18th green that turned out to be the clincher. Welcome to the math of Khan. From a best 2010 check of 7,360 euros to 750,000 euros. From 471st to 106th in the world rankings. From Q-school late last year to a a five-year exemption on the European Tour, including an automatic entry into the Open Championship. Even a Ryder Cup spot is now possible for the 37-year-old from Essex. A little Sinatra seems appropriate: “Blue skies smilin’ at me. Nothing but blue skies do I see.”

By the way, Khan’s charge was also the largest final-day comeback in the history of the tournament. Simon, who had one other European Tour win in 2004, was seven shots back entering the final round. Well done, sir.

Once again, it demonstrates one good week can change everything. Yes, it Khan.

Tour Notes

• PGA Tour: Australian Jason Day won the HP Byron Nelson Championship.
• LPGA Tour: Sun Young Yoo captured the Sybase Match Play Championship by beating Angela Stanford 3 and 1.

−The Armchair Golfer

1 comment:

Jim Dauer, said...

I wonder if Paul Lawrie, who finished T6, had any words for Simon after the round. He won a big tournament in similar fashion a few years back.

Jim Dauer