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Billy Horschel wins the BMW PGA Championship – European Ryder Cup Team line-up confirmed.

Spectators were able to return after one-year hiatus imposed by the Coronavirus pandemic, and fans enjoyed a top-quality BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth that boasted sporting drama galore. Horschel secured the title at the third Rolex Series event of the year, and his second major BMW title after the BMW Championship in Denver (USA) with an excellent final round of 65 (7 under par) and a birdie at the 18th hole.

BMW PGA Championship
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  • Billy Horschel (269 strokes, -19) triumphs at the BMW PGA Championship after a thriller on the final round at the Wentworth Club (London).
  • The 34-year-old becomes just the second American to secure victory at the flagship event on the European Tour, Arnold Palmer having won in 1975.
  • 110,000 spectators present for a ‘Festival of Golf’.
  • Bernd Wiesberger (AUT, -11, T20), defending champion Tyrrell Hatton (MC) and Matthew Fitzpatrick (both ENG, -11, 20) qualify for the European Ryder Cup team.
  • Captain Padraig Harrington hands wild cards to Sergio García (ESP), Shane Lowry (IRL, -12, T17), and Ian Poulter (ENG, MC).

 

Spectators were able to return after one-year hiatus imposed by the Coronavirus pandemic, and fans enjoyed a top-quality BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth that boasted sporting drama galore. Horschel secured the title at the third Rolex Series event of the year, and his second major BMW title after the BMW Championship in Denver (USA) with an excellent final round of 65 (7 under par) and a birdie at the 18th hole. There was also plenty of suspense around the question of who would claim the final three qualification spots on the Ryder Cup Team Europe, and fans were kept guessing until late in the final round.

“On behalf of everyone at BMW, I would like to congratulate Billy Horschel for winning the 2021 BMW PGA Championship,” said Chris Brownridge, Chief Executive Officer BMW Group UK. “It has been fantastic to see spectators safely back at Wentworth in person this year and we have all been treated to an exciting tournament in return.”

A thrilling final round at times featured 15 players in with a chance of the title but it was Horschel who proved most adept at keeping his nerve. In the end, seven birdies without a single dropped shot were the key to the first victory for an American golfer at an event in the prestigious Rolex series. The 2014 FedExCup champion only pulled clear of the field on the final hole, taking a brilliant approach shot and following that up with a tap-in birdie.

“It feels amazing. We are talking about winning majors, the Players Championship and a few other events, but after having been here in 2019, I added the BMW PGA Championship to that list,” said Horschel. “In my opinion this is equal to winning a Players Championship. The names on this trophy are legends in their own right. To be the second American to win this event is amazing. There is something about me playing well in BMW tournaments – I have to find some more BMW events around the world.”

Second place was shared by Kiradech Aphibarnrat (THA), Jamie Donaldson (WAL) and Laurie Canter (ENG, all -18), ahead of Christiaan Bezuidenhout (RSA, -17). Justin Rose, Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston (both ENG) and Francesco Laporta (ITA, all -16) followed tied in sixth.

The BMW PGA Championship was the final tournament at which European players had the chance to score points for the Ryder Cup. Four of the nine qualification places were still mathematically up for grabs. However, there was only a theoretical chance that England’s Matthew Fitzpatrick and Tyrrell Hatton would miss out on qualification, so a thrilling battle developed for the remaining three spots between Bernd Wiesberger, Lee Westwood, and Shane Lowry. Wiesberger gave the most solid performance over four rounds, becoming the first-ever Austrian to qualify for the Ryder Cup. The advantage swung back and forth from Westwood to Lowry, culminating in a heart-stopping finale on Sunday that saw the Englishman claim the upper hand.

Lowry’s dream of participating in the Ryder Cup for the first time will still come true, however, as captain Padraig Harrington nominated the Irish golfer as Captain’s Pick on Sunday at the Wentworth Club, as was also the case for Ryder Cup legends Sergio García and Ian Poulter. Jon Rahm (ESP), Rory McIlroy (NIR), Tommy Fleetwood (ENG), Viktor Hovland (NOR) and Paul Casey (ENG) had already qualified for the defending champions’ team before the BMW PGA Championship.

The teams from the USA and Europe will face one another at Whistling Straits (in the US state of Wisconsin) during the week after next (21st to 26th September), which will also mark the debut of BMW as Worldwide Partner of the Ryder Cup. The US team for the legendary and emotionally charged team event will feature Collin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas, Patrick Cantlay, Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele, Jordan Spieth, Harris English, Daniel Berger and Scottie Scheffler.

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