Perry Eyes Ryder Cup After Memorial Victory

Kenny Perry achieved what only Tiger Woods was previously capable of doing when he won his third Memorial tournament.

Perry shot a final round of three-under-par 69 for an eight-under total of 280 and a two-stroke victory over the foursome of Jerry Kelly, Justin Rose, Mathew Goggin and Mike Weir.

Not only did the veteran American join Woods as a three-time winner at the Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio but he also enhanced his chances of playing alongside the world number one at this year’s Ryder Cup clash against Europe.

The 47-year-old Perry became the oldest winner of the tournament that is hosted by Jack Nicklaus and earned more than $1 million for his efforts, pushing him up to fifth on the Ryder Cup standings.

Earlier this year, United States Ryder Cup captain Paul Azinger said any player on the team would probably have to win a tournament this season.

And with the biennial clash between the US and Europe being played at his native Kentucky course at Valhalla, Perry is focusing more on the Ryder Cup than the majors. He said in an AP article:

“When Azinger said that you’re probably going to have to win a tournament to get on his team, that changed my thinking. I’m glad I saw it.”

Perry said he is unlikely to make an attempt at qualifying for the US Open and instead would try to pick up Ryder Cup points at PGA Tour events where he feels he can do well, such as next week at Memphis and at the Hartford event that immediately follows Torrey Pines.

Perry swept to the lead after a birdie on the ninth hole as overnight leader Goggin squandered his three-shot advantage with a trio of bogies. He finished on 74 while Kelly, Rose and Weir all scored 71s.

On the European Tour, Australian Scott Strange overcame difficult circumstances to win the Wales Open.

The 31-year-old was suffering from dizzy spells on the course and also had some undisclosed personal issues back home in Australia. However, that did not stop him from closing with a 64 to total 22-under 262 and win the tournament by four strokes from Robert Karlsson, who also shot 64 in the fourth round.

Strange had a three-shot overnight lead and was never going to surrender much of it as he produced a fine final round with early birdies and no bogeys throughout the 18 holes. He was only one stroke away from the course record he achieved in his opening round.

Third place went to Frenchman Raphael Jacquelin, who was a whopping eight shots behind while five players, including England’s Nick Dougherty, tied for fourth place on 271.

In Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, Korea’s Lee Seon-hwa won the Ginn Tribute on the LPGA Tour after a play-off victory over Australia’s Karrie Webb.

Lee shot a 67 in the final round and then two-putted from 45 feet on the first play-off hole as Webb missed a three-foot putt that would have taken the contest to another hole.

Meanwhile, all this drama came after overnight leader Sophie Gustafson, who had a huge six-shot lead, collapsed on the final round with a seven-over 79 that left her three strokes adrift of the two play-off contestants.

Lee and Webb finished on 14-under 274 after the Australian closed with a 70. The tournament was hosted by Sweden’s former world number one Annika Sorenstam who finished tied for 32 in an event she has won three times in the past.

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