Brier wins wire-to-wire in Vienna

European Tour

Tournament: BA-CA Golf Open Presented by Telekom Austria
Venue: Fontana GC, Vienna, Austria
Winner: Markus Brier

Home favourite Markus Brier reached the peak of his career on Sunday with victory in the BA-CA Austrian Open after leading from start to finish.
The 37-year-old from nearby Vienna used home advantage to full effect – the Fontana course is his club – to see off the challenge of Denmark’s Soren Hansen, England’s Simon Dyson and Scotland’s Colin Montgomerie.
Brier carded a 68 for an 18-under-par total of 266, three better than Hansen and four ahead of Dyson, his playing partner for the last two days.
Montgomerie, who began the day six shots back, briefly threatened to mount a challenge when three successive birdies from the second lifted him to 12-under and one behind Brier, who bogeyed the second and third.
However, the Ryder Cup star could not maintain his momentum and after reaching the turn in 32 had a horrible back nine of 43 which included two double-bogey sixes and three other dropped shots.
But the week belonged to Brier, who seemed destined to win from the moment he struck a hole in one at the 145-yard 11th on the first day.
Everything seemed to go his way – he had an eagle two yesterday when he holed his 110-yard approach to the 387-yard 14th – and in the end nothing could stop him becoming the first Austrian victor on the European Tour.
“I am just happy to have achieved what I have been trying to do for seven years,” said Brier, who won a 2004 Challenge Tour event on the same course.
“It is good to be in the history books. Hopefully my golf will step up now.”
Yorkshireman Dyson bogeyed the third after missing the green and then had 12 straight pars coming home before a birdie three at the 16th saw him finish 14-under.
By that time Brier was out of sight with the only sustained challenge coming from Hansen, who had four birdies either side of the turn and seven in all.
However, his chance disappeared with a bogey at the 16th and the Austrian, who over the first two days claimed he knew at least half of the crowd personally, was able to play to an excited gallery.
Dyson, a maiden winner himself in Indonesia in March, was gracious in defeat after a level-par round of 71.
“I’m very disappointed. I struck the ball beautifully tee to green but did not hole a thing all day,” he told PA Sport.
“I’m very disappointed I haven’t won because the way I played I should have.
“But I’m pleased Markus has won it. He is a really good lad. He has played lovely and putted fantastically – he has certainly got these greens.
“He’s a worthy winner – and third is nothing to be laughed at.”
The day was a disappointing one for Montgomerie who came out all guns blazing.
His third from a bunker at the first hit the flag and bounced out before he holed a 10-foot putt at the next and then chipped in from the fringe at the third.
A nine-foot putt at the short fourth put him within touching distance of the lead but the birdies dried up and, as he tried to chase them, his game fell apart coming home as he finished with a 75.
Dyson, in the group behind, was aware of what was unfolding in front of him early on but said it did not affect either him or Brier.
“Every time we looked over he was holing a putt or making a birdie but there was a long way to go so we didn’t make much of it,” added the 28-year-old from York.
“We just thought we had better start making some birdies; he (Markus) did and I didn’t and that is why he is champion.”
Australian Richard Green finished fourth on 13-under after he set a new course record of 63, while Irishman Gary Murphy carded a 65 for 10-under and fifth place – his highest finish since July 2003.
“I have been driving it in the fairway all week, which I haven’t been doing all season, and my putting has been pretty good this week,” said the 33-year-old from Kilkenny.
“Hopefully this can kick-start my season.”

ALL THE FINAL SCORES:
266 Markus Brier (Aut) 65 67 66 68
269 Soren Hansen (Den) 68 67 69 65
270 Simon Dyson 66 66 67 71
271 Richard Green (Aus) 71 67 70 63
274 Gary Murphy 68 70 71 65
275 Jean-Francois Lucquin (Fra) 68 69 69 69
275 Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spa) 67 67 74 67
277 Darren Fichardt (Rsa) 69 73 69 66, Steven Jeppesen (Swe) 68 67 75 67, Emanuele Canonica (Ita) 70 66 70 71
278 Gregory Havret (Fra) 69 68 78 63, Gregory Bourdy (Fra) 67 70 70 71
279 Mark Roe 72 69 70 68, Oliver Whiteley 66 73 70 70, Gary Emerson 70 64 74 71, Colin Montgomerie 67 68 69 75, Steven O’Hara 68 70 71 70
280 Richard Sterne (Rsa) 71 66 76 67, Alexandre Rocha (Bra) 68 69 71 72
281 Pedro Linhart (Spa) 70 71 73 67, Miguel Carballo (Arg) 69 69 74 69, Alastair Forsyth 67 74 71 69, Toni Karjalainen (Fin) 69 71 71 70, Philip Golding 71 68 71 71, David Higgins 67 68 72 74
282 Titch Moore (Rsa) 72 67 74 69, Thomas Bjorn (Den) 70 71 71 70, Michele Reale (Ita) 70 69 72 71, Robert Coles 72 68 70 72, Simon Hurd 69 71 69 73
283 Phil Worthington 71 69 73 70, Peter Senior (Aus) 72 64 75 72, Lee Slattery 70 67 74 72, Kieran Staunton 79 68 72 73, David Griffiths 69 66 73 75
284 Terry Pilkadaris (Aus) 71 70 73 70, Jose Manuel Lara (Spa) 69 72 73 70, Sven Struver (Ger) 66 73 74 71, Jorge Benedetti (Col) 66 73 74 71, Peter Fowler (Aus) 69 70 73 72
285 Benoit Teilleria (Fra) 71 72 74 68,
Per Ulrik Johansson (Swe) 70 69 75 71, Nicolas Meitinger (Ger) 75 66 71 73
286 Richard McEvoy 69 72 74 71, David Bransdon (Aus) 69 74 71 72, Gary Clark 71 71 71 73, Anders Sjostrand (Swe) 74 68 70 74
287 Martin Erlandsson (Swe) 68 71 79 69, Marcel Siem (Ger) 71 70 74 72, Paul McGinley 71 71 73 72, Scott Drummond 69 68 75 75
288 Mikko Ilonen (Fin) 72 69 76 65, Wilhelm Schauman (Swe) 72 70 75 71, Jamie Spence 69 73 72 74
289 Garry Houston 69 70 78 72, Brad Sutterfield (USA) 73 69 75 72, Benn Barham 67 75 74 73, Ben Mason 72 71 73 73, Carl Suneson (Spa) 71 70 72 76, Tom Whitehouse 71 70 72 69
290 Marten Olander (Swe) 70 71 78 71, Andrew Oldcorn 72 71 76 71, Matthew Millar (Aus) 72 71 72 75
291 Stephen Browne 70 70 78 73, David Dixon 72 70 76 73
292 Robert Rock 70 73 79 70, Cedric Menut (Fra) 69 74 78 71, Marc Cayeux (Zim) 73 70 73 76
293 Alvaro Salto (Spa) 73 70 80 70, John Bickerton 70 72 79 72, Neil Cheetham 71 71 77 74
295 Alfredo Garcia-Heredia (Spa) 70 72 80 73
303 Thomas Feyrsinger (Aut) 70 73 84 76

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