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Dream come true for Knox

Sky Sports logo Sky Sports 09-11-2015


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Russell Knox described his WGC-HSBC Champions victory as a "dream come true" after completing a two-shot triumph in Shanghai on Sunday. 

Knox endured a frantic scramble to obtain a visa and make travel arrangements after earning a late place in the field following the withdrawal of JB Holmes, but the effort was worthwhile as he became the first Scot to win a World Golf Championship title.

The 30-year-old was a model of composure as he held off joint third-round leader Kevin Kisner and a stunning late charge from Danny Willett with a closing 68 that posted a winning score of 20 under par.

"It's incredible," said Knox afterwards. "I always hoped it was going to happen, but you're just never sure. There are so many incredible players throughout the world, especially at tournaments like this with such an elite field. To come and be on top this week is a dream come true, and I still can't quite believe I'm here.

"Deep down in my bones, I felt I was capable of winning. I thought it was going to be maybe another year. But I'm glad it happened now. Winning at any level is the hardest thing you can do, and especially because I've never won a big one like this. It was tough but I just kept holing putts, and golf is so much easier when that happens.

"I was quite calm, way more than normal to be honest. But at the same time, it was the most nerve-wracking thing I've ever done," added Knox, who opted not to play the final hole of his third round in the gloom on Saturday evening and returned to birdie the hole early on Sunday morning.

"It was a great decision not to play the 18th yesterday," he added. "I was starting to get a little tight. I wasn't swinging as well as I was earlier in the round, and it was too dark. I still can't quite believe Kevin Kisner and Branden Grace finished the hole because when they hit their tee shots, they couldn't even see where the ball went.

"I had 92 yards to the pin and I hit it pretty close and made the putt. So I was thrilled, and I think that gave me huge momentum going into the last round."

Knox bogeyed the ninth to slip into a share of the lead, but he responded with birdies at the next two holes and another at the 14th gave him a useful two-shot advantage which he protected with four closing pars, including a clutch save on 16.

"I made bogey on nine, which I wasn't thrilled about," he said. "But I walked off the green and said to my caddie that we were tied for the lead with nine holes to go, what a great position to be in.

"I've been working hard on my attitude, and I got up there on 10 and hit a great tee shot, and making birdie on 10 and 11 was obviously huge for me. I just kept wanting to make birdies, kept trying to push ahead. Getting to 20 under was my goal at the start of the day and I knew that if I got to 20, it was going to be tough to beat."

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