Singh by six in Houston

Clarke, Olazabal set up Augusta showing

Bob Warters's picture
Mon, 1 Apr 2002

Darren Clarke and Jose-Maria Olazabal both posted their intentions for a strong showing at the US Masters at Augusta on April 11.

They finished second and third respectively behind Vijay Singh in the Shell Houston Open at The Woodlands – with the Spaniard’s prize-money taking him to second on the US Tour moneylist, following his win at the Buick Invitational in February.

Singh didn't allow for much suspense in the final round. He claimed his first PGA Tour title since the 2000 Masters, with a 4-under 68 for a six-stroke victory and tournament-record 22-under total. He earned $720,000 for his 10th PGA Tour title.

Northern Ireland's Clarke shot a 71 while Olazabal was another stroke back after a 70. Jay Haas (69) and Shigeki Murayama (70) followed at 275.

Said Singh: "Darren really played well. It was closer than it looked. He really didn't make a bad shot until his bogey on 17."

Singh, who missed the cut last week in The Players Championship, birdied the first hole of the day and tightened his hold on the lead on 13 when Clarke hit his tee shot out of bounds. Clarke, who returns home to Sunningdale for a few days before flying back to Augusta next week, failed to get up and down with a greenside chip at 17 and that was that.

Luke Donald picked up another useful cheque, finishing on six under par.

 

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