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[ Home >> About Us - Store Information >> Great Golf Deals.com Blog >> Great Golf Deals Blog >> What's In The Winner's Golf Bag:Dustin Johnson at The 2013 WGC-HSBC Champions - Great Golf Deals.com Blog ]

What's In The Winner's Golf Bag:Dustin Johnson at The 2013 WGC-HSBC Champions - Great Golf Deals.com Blog

Dustin Johnson believes he can win a maiden major title after recovering superbly from seeing his overnight three-shot lead wiped out in just two holes to claim the WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai.

Johnson played the last six holes in five under par at Sheshan International Golf Club to card a closing 66 and finish 24 under par, three ahead of the defending champion Ian Poulter.

All three members of the final group of Johnson, Poulter and Graeme McDowell shot 66, meaning Poulter finished one ahead of his Ryder Cup team-mate McDowell, with Spain's Sergio García two shots behind in fourth after a closing 63.

The US Open champion Justin Rose was fifth on 16 under and Rory McIlroy's share of sixth with Canada's Graham DeLaet on 15 under was more than enough to secure the former world No1's place in the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.

"It was a good week. It was a step in the right direction for sure," said McIlroy, who moved up to 38th in the Race to Dubai. "I don't think anyone could have competed with Dustin this week. He played very, very well and obviously is a deserved champion.

"I just didn't make enough birdies. I didn't take advantage of the par fives today and some of the short par fours. It's probably one of my only bogey-free rounds of the year but it just didn't contain enough birdies. It's something to build on and nice to go into an off-week now and I know that I'm into Dubai."

Reflecting on his win, Johnson said: "I didn't get off to the best start and Poulter and McDowell got off to great starts and put a lot of pressure on me, but I am swinging well and putting well so thought just stick to my game plan and play the golf course how I want to play it and it's going to come," Johnson said after claiming his eighth PGA Tour title and the first prize of just over €1m (£856,000).

Johnson has not always handled such pressure so well, McDowell famously winning the 2010 US Open at Pebble Beach after Johnson squandered a three-shot lead in the final round.

"It takes a while to learn that [maturity and patience]," added Johnson. "I wish I would have had some of that a few times a few years ago, but you learn from your mistakes and try to get better from them and I think I showed a lot of patience and a lot of discipline with clubs I picked and shot selection.

"This is the biggest win of my career and hopefully there are better things to come. A major is always the next step. Am I suited best for one or the other? I don't think so. I think they all suit me very well."

Johnson began the final round three shots clear of Poulter but three-putted the opening hole as the Englishman birdied the first and second, while McDowell joined Poulter in the lead with birdies at the first three holes.

Birdies on the eighth and ninth got Johnson back into a share of the lead and although Poulter edged in front with a birdie on the 12th, Johnson birdied the 13th and matched Poulter's birdie on the 14th to set up a grandstand finish.

Johnson was left alone in the lead when Poulter was unable to get up and down from a greenside bunker on the 15th, although with the 16th being a reachable par four and the par-five 18th still to come – Johnson took seven there on Saturday – the result was far from settled.

None of the final group tried to drive the green on the 16th, although Johnson's length meant he could hit a long iron just 10 yards short and he promptly chipped in for an eagle two.

Poulter's birdie left him two behind and the gap was three when Johnson hit a superb tee shot to eight feet on the 17th and holed the birdie putt.

"I guess it was a good defence," Poulter said. "Obviously I'm a little disappointed not to put my hands back on the trophy, but 15 birdies and an eagle at the weekend is some pretty good golf. So it's exciting for the next few weeks ahead and obviously it's some good points on the board obviously for Ryder Cup [qualification] and the Race to Dubai.

"I'm in great form. I really am playing well. The work I've done leading up to this run of tournaments has really worked and I couldn't be hitting it any better right now and obviously rolling a few putts in."

Despite a flawless final round McDowell was also disappointed, the Northern Irishman not dropping a single shot over the weekend as he closed the gap on Henrik Stenson at the top of the Race to Dubai to just over 145,000 points.

"Obviously there is a pang of disappointment, but generally just very proud of myself the way I played this week, tee to green especially," McDowell said. "On the greens, room for improvement."


Driver: TaylorMade SLDR
Loft: 10.5 Degrees, Shaft: Fujikura Fuel 2.0 X-Flex

3 Wood: TaylorMade R9
Loft: 15.5 Degrees, Shaft: Aldila RIP Alpha 80 X-Stiff
5 Wood: TaylorMade R9
Loft: 19 Degrees, Shaft: Aldila RIP Alpha 90 X-Stiff
Irons: TaylorMade Tour Preferred MB Forged (3-PW)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 Tour Issue

Wedges: TaylorMade TP xFT (54 and 60 Degrees)
Shafts: KBS (Black Nickel)

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