No more doubts for Wood after breakthrough victory in Qatar

Mon Jan 28, 2013 8:20am EST
 

DOHA (Reuters) - Britain's Chris Wood was beginning to wonder if he would ever end his title drought before he finally made the breakthrough in the Qatar Masters at the weekend.

It was a case of third time lucky for the 6-foot-5 (1.96-metre) Wood after he had twice previously gone into the closing day of a European Tour event at the summit of the leaderboard only to slip down the field in the final round.

The 25-year-old had also amassed 19 top-10 finishes without once entering the winner's circle.

"I was starting to have little doubts that I would ever win," Wood told reporters after climbing into the top 60 of the world rankings from number 142.

"But I have a load of good people and good friends around me - they see me playing at home and know full well that I'm good enough to win. Until you do it though, the doubt is in the back of your mind."

Wood, who finished in the top five at the British Open in 2008 and 2009, delivered a majestic coup de grace on the last hole in Doha on Saturday.

The Englishman needed an eagle three to pip Spain's Sergio Garcia and George Coetzee of South Africa for the title and he produced a sumptuous six-iron from 202 yards before coaxing in his putt from 12 feet.

"I couldn't really feel my hands at the time," said the Qatar champion, who shares the distinction with Swede Robert Karlsson of being the tallest players on the tour. "It was one chance and I knew that was all I was going to get.

"Four years of frustration of not winning and it all came out a bit after the putt," added Wood, referring to his emotional punch of the air as the ball disappeared into the cup.   Continued...

 
Chris Wood of England celebrates after his eagle putt on the 18th green during the final round of the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters at the Doha Golf Club January 26, 2013. REUTERS/Mohammed Dabbous