Young Korean golfer Bae Sang-moon successfully defended the Korea Open here yesterday, sinking the challenge of Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy. Bae recorded a one-stroke victory over compatriot Kim Dae-sub at the Woo Jeung Hills Golf Club for his second big win this year, after claiming the GS Caltex Maekyung Open in May. In the second event of the new OneAsia Tour, Bae shot a final round four-under par 67, to finish at 10-under overall.
McIlroy, who started the day in a tie for the lead with Kim and was hot favourite to win, fired a 72 to finish four behind the winner in joint third place. Thailand's Thaworn Wiratchant claimed his 11th Asian Tour victory with a commanding six-shot triumph at the Macau Open. Thaworn charged home with a closing three-under-par 68 for a four-day total of 15-under par to pip India's Gaganjeet Bhullar at the Macau Golf and Country Club.
Thaworn's victory left him one title short of equalling the Asian Tour record of 12 career wins set by his compatriot Thongchai Jaidee, but the 42-year-old said he was confident of overtaking his countryman. "I will continue to play on the Asian Tour and if I am fit enough, I think breaking his record would not be a problem," said Thaworn. On Saturday, Tiger Woods broke the course record at Cog Hill, Illinois, with his best round this year to open up a commanding lead after the third day of the BMW Championship.
For the second consecutive day, Woods stumbled at the start, making a bogey at the first hole, but was at his brilliant best after that, collecting eight birdies and an eagle in a round of nine-under par 62. That was enough to eclipse the previous mark of 63 he had shared with six others and give him a huge seven-stroke lead over his nearest rivals. * With agencies