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Karlsson leaves it late in Doha

ESPN staff
January 31, 2010 « Chelsea passed up the chance to sign Smalling | ESPN FA Cup Promo »
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Robert Karlsson scored two birdies on the final two holes to seal victory in Qatar © Getty Images
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Sweden's Robert Karlsson produced a late charge to take his tenth European Tour title in Doha. Karlsson's superb final round of seven-under 65 took him to 15-under to win by three shots from Spain's Alvaro Quiros.

The Swede was two shots off the pace going into the final day having previously hit rounds of 68, 70 and 70, and after nine holes had moved up to share the lead with overnight leader Bradley Dredge. But while Dredge lost his nerve, holing a bogey on the 11th and a double bogey on the 13th, Karlsson kept his cool to hole four birdies on the back nine to seal the victory.

It was Karlsson's first victory on the Tour since October 2008, having missed four months last year after suffering from blurred vision caused by fluid behind the retina in his left eye.

"It was a tough time coming back," he said. "I had a couple of good finishes at the end of last year with Henrik Stenson at the World Cup and with a second in Japan, but it is fantastic to be back now. I am really happy to be back playing well, it is the first time I have played really well for a long time and the way I finished off today was very satisfying."

Race to Dubai champion Lee Westwood was the top Brit, and shared the lead with three holes to play, but a bogey on the 16th and two birdies on Karlsson's final two holes saw Westwood share third place with Australian Brett Rumford.

In stark contrast to his impressive third round, overnight leader Paul Casey hit five bogeys as he endured a torrid round of two-over 74 to slip down to fifth, joint with fellow Brits Dredge and Oliver Wilson, who finished with a hat-trick of birdies.

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