Stenson wins Accenture

From Brian Keogh in Tucson

Henrik Stenson became the first Swede to win a World Golf Championship event when he beat defending champion Geoff Ogilvy 2 and 1 to claim the Accenture Match Play Championship in Arizona.

The 30-year-old from Gothenburg claimed a massive cheque for $1.35 million to charge to the top of the European Tour Order of Merit after a roller-coaster final in which the lead changed hands five times.

Ogilvy went two up twice in the match but it was Stenson who was the strongest of the two over the last nine holes of an exciting contest.

The Swede took a two-hole lead after the first 18 holes of the 36 hole decider but was pegged back to level when Ogilvy took the first two holes after lunch.

He was soon two down when he three putted the 25th and took three to get down from the fringe of the par three 26th.

But the match was far from over and the Dubai-based Swede stormed back to level matters with a birdie at the 28th and a par at the 29th where Ogilvy overshot the green.

Stenson then birdied the 30th hole, the driveable par four 12th, when he got up and down from greenside sand.

It looked as though he would take a two up lead at the par three 33rd where Ogilvy was bunkered but the Australian rolled in an 18 footer for a half in par to remain just one down with four to play.

However, Stenson closed out the match in stunning style with birdies at the 34th and 35th to complete a remarkable comeback from the doldrums in 2001 when he walked off the course at the K Club after just nine holes of his second round in the European Open.

At the 34th, the par three 16th, he fired a nine-iron to just 18 inches to put pressure on the Australian who replied to six feet but failed to make his putt.

Then at the par five 35th, the defending champion bunkered his second shot from 296 yards and could not match a brilliant two-putt par by Stenson from nearly 60 feet, where the Swede stroked a left to right curling putt to within two feet.

Stenson said: "I had seen pictures of Geoff holing those kinds of putts before so I knew they were coming. Luckily enough I was able to make those birdies at the end and close out the match."

In the consolation match, South Africa’s Trevor Immelman beat Chad Campbell 4 and 2 to claim a cheque for $575,000 while the Texan had to settle for $475,000.