Jan 24th, 2021
Hatton sails to victory in Abu Dhabi
Englishman claims fourth Rolex Series title in style
The Englishman has now won two of the last three Rolex Series events, having lifted the BMW PGA Championship title last October, and his latest victory is timely with the European Points List restarting this week in the race to qualify for Padraig Harrington's European Ryder Cup side.
Hatton’s was another nerveless final round display as the 29-year-old cruised to three birdies on the front nine, while McIlroy dropped shots at the par three fourth and par five eighth holes, to lose any momentum created by the early birdies at the second and third.
"I'm thrilled to be honest. Even knocking the putt in on 18, it doesn't seem like I've won the tournament. Obviously it's amazing. I've always loved starting my season here in Abu Dhabi, and to now add my name on that trophy with so many great champions before me is a huge honour," said Hatton.
"I think the big moment for me today was the putt on ten. Maybe that was going eight feet past and just hit the hole. That's huge."
Victory rarely looked in doubt for Hatton as he played assured and calculated golf down the stretch, three birdies on the way home wrapping up a flawless six-under final round 66, an 18 under total and a sixth European Tour win. He now joins Jon Rahm as the only other player to lift four Rolex Series titles and becomes the first Race to Dubai leader of the 2021 campaign.
Australia's Jason Scrivener claimed the best result of his career on the European Tour, a final round 66 earning him runner-up spot, while McIlroy claimed his eighth top three finish in 11 appearances at Abu Dhabi Golf Club after the Northern Irishman signed for a level-par 72.