Sunday, March 2, 2008

Mark Brown wins Johnnie Walker Classic

Unheralded New Zealander Mark Brown surged up the leaderboard with a stunning back nine to capture the Johnnie Walker Classic title on Sunday.

Brown, who was four shots behind at the turn, fired four consecutive birdies and another at the last to reel in Taichiro Kiyata as the overnight leader faltered, winning by three shots with five-under 67 for 18-under-par 270.

The 33-year-old, who only recently returned to golf after a brief stint in the mid-1990s, landed the biggest payday of his career -- 420,000 dollars -- for his second straight victory after last week's Sail Open.

Japan's Kiyota carded 71 for 15-under-par 273, tied for second with Australian Greg Chalmers and Englishman Graeme Storm at the par-72 DLF Golf and Country Club.

Triple major winner Vijay Singh closed with 69 for nine-under-par 279 as his late charge ran out of steam.

World number five Adam Scott, the pre-tournament favourite, finished well down the leaderboard with seven-under-par 281 despite finishing with a flourish with an eagle at the last.

European stars Colin Montgomerie and Ian Poulter had failed to make the cut as lesser lights took centre stage at the 2.5-million-dollar tournament, one of Asia's premier events.

Scott, Tiger Woods, Ernie Els and Nick Faldo are among previous winners of the Classic, which has toured the region since 1990.

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