15 Nov 2021 | Professional golf |

Aussies on Tour: Top 50 beckons after Lee's top-five in Dubai

by PGA of Australia

Min Woo Lee during his top-five finish in Dubai.

By Tony Webeck

West Australian Min Woo Lee is on the verge of the top 50 in the Official World Golf Rankings after recording his second top-five finish in his past three starts at the AVIV Dubai Championship in Dubai.

Trying to add to his Scottish Open victory in July, Lee began the final round at the Greg Norman designed Fire Course at the Jumeirah Golf Estates three strokes adrift of Dane Jaochim B Hansen.

The 23-year-old began by making birdie at the opening hole for the fourth straight day and added two more by the turn to play the front nine in three-under 33.

He was the beneficiary of a tight call in search of a lost ball at the par-4 10th and after adding his fourth birdie of the day at the par-4 12th kept the top of the leaderboard in his sights.

Back-to-back bogeys at 14 and 15 would ultimately cruel his hopes as he closed with birdies at 16 and 18 for a final round of 4-under 68 and a share of fourth, three shy of Hansen’s winning total of 23-under.

Unsure he would even play the event after a gruelling season, Lee’s top-five result is projected to move him up to a career-high of 51st in the world rankings and fifth in the Race to Dubai standings with just one event left to play.

No Australian has finished inside the top-five on the European Tour Order of Merit since Robert Allenby back in 1996 and by qualifying for the DP World Tour Championship for the first time Lee is likely to get another world ranking boost next week and move inside the top 50.

Fellow West Australian Jason Scrivener will enter the season finale 15th in the Race to Dubai standings after he closed with a 68 to finish tied for 31st while Scott Hend’s missed cut saw him fall outside the top 121 who maintain DP World Tour membership.

Sydney’s Stephanie Kyriacou remains fourth on the Ladies European Tour Order of Merit with one event left to play, finishing tied for 10th at the Aramco Team Series-Jeddah event with a final round of even par 72.

After taking a share of the lead on day one Marc Leishman closed with a 72 to finish tied for 19th at the PGA Tour’s Houston Open, one shot behind good mate Cameron Smith (69) who moved up into a share of 15th on the final day.

Dylan Perry recorded his third top-15 finish of the Japan Golf Tour at the VISA Taiheiyo Masters while Su Oh was the big winner at the LPGA Tour’s Pelican Women’s Championship, winning a Lamborghini for two years with an ace at the par-3 12th, the seventh of her career.

Kiwi Steven Alker closed out an extraordinary maiden season on the Champions Tour, second behind Phil Mickelson at the Charles Schwab Cup Championship.

Including his victory at the TimberTech Championship it marks Alker’s ninth consecutive top-10 finish and takes his season earnings to $US1,146,207 from just 10 events.

PGA Tour Hewlett Packard Enterprise Houston Open Memorial Park Golf Course, Houston, Texas Winner Jason Kokrak      68-71-66-65—270           $US1.35m T15        Cameron Smith 71-69-68-69—277           $125,625 T19        Marc Leishman 65-70-71-72—278           $85,660 T54        Adam Scott        68-73-71-73—285           $17,400 T54        Jason Day           67-74-74-70—285           $17,400 MC        Cam Davis          70-73—143

European Tour AVIV Dubai Championship Jumeirah Golf Estates (Fire Course), Dubai, UAE Winner Joachim B Hansen          63-67-67-68—265           €203,701 T4          Min Woo Lee     67-67-66-68—268           €47,956 T31        Jason Scrivener 67-70-69-68—274           €9,411 MC        Scott Hend         68-72—140

Japan Golf Tour Mitsui Sumitomo VISA Taiheiyo Masters Taiheiyo Club (Gotemba Cse), Shizuoka Winner Hideto Tanihara 71-66-67-70—274           ¥30m T15        Dylan Perry        67-71-75-69—282           ¥2.58m T43        David Bransdon 70-77-71-70—288           ¥645,000 T45        Anthony Quayle              72-71-71-75—289           ¥585,000 T57        Todd Sinnott      71-73-76-73—293           ¥355,200

LPGA Tour Pelican Women’s Championship Pelican Golf Club, Belleair, Florida Winner Nelly Korda        65-66-63-69—263           $US262,500 Won on first hole of playoff T2          Lydia Ko              67-66-64-66—263           $123,183 T40        Katherine Kirk    70-67-68-70—275           $8,178 T52        Su Oh    68-64-73-72—277           $5,486 MC        Sarah Kemp       71-74—145 MC        Sarah Jane Smith             73-74—147

Ladies European Tour Aramco Team Series Jeddah Royal Greens Golf & Country Club, Saudi Arabia Winner Pia Babnik          70-65-65—200  €26,164 T10        Stephanie Kyriacou         69-65-72—206  €3,837 MC        Whitney Hillier  75-69-73—217

Champions Tour Charles Schwab Cup Championship Phoenix Country Club, Phoenix, Arizona Winner Phil Mickelson   65-67-68-65—265           $US440,000 2            Steven Alker      66-65-68-67—266           $250,000 T27        Rod Pampling    69-73-66-68—276           $18,958

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