Tommy Fleetwood still dreaming of Race to Dubai crown

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Tommy Fleetwood insists he will be happy if Ryder Cup partner Francesco Molinari succeeds him as European number one.

Fleetwood is second in the Race to Dubai behind Open champion Molinari, with whom he created history by becoming the first European pair to win all four of their matches together in a Ryder Cup at Le Golf National.

The duo will be reunited in the first two rounds of this week’s British Masters at Walton Heath, with team-mate Thorbjorn Olesen completing the marquee group, as Fleetwood seeks to close the gap of 1.4million points to the other half of the ‘Moliwood’ pair.

Fleetwood, who will play in China and Turkey before contesting the season-ending event in Dubai, said: “I’m a long way behind, but it’s the opposite of last year in that I led all year last year and this year for the final few events I’m kind of chasing it now.

“I might get nowhere near and it’s a stretch as a goal to think about it, but I’d love to play Dubai with a chance. I’d love to get in contention in a couple of events and maybe win one.

“If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen. It’s kind of in Fran’s hands a little bit, as well. There’s probably people I would prefer to beat, but if it was me and Fran that it came down to either way I’m going to be more than happy, whichever way that would turn on.

“I think we won’t hold it against him. With the year he’s having, I think he might deserve it.”

Fleetwood went straight from the Ryder Cup to last week’s Dunhill Links Championship and finished runner-up at St Andrews in what was his 24th tournament of a busy season.

And, although the 27-year-old enjoys playing such a full schedule, he admits it is beginning to take its toll.

“You always get to a stage where you need a week off and I think the most exhausted I’ve been through the year this year was Germany and France after the US Open,” said Fleetwood, who finished runner-up to Brooks Koepka at Shinnecock Hills.

“I think that was where I pretty much crashed at that point. It’s about knowing when your cut-off point is and knowing when that’s coming, either having the whereabouts to pull out or, if you’re going to play, not worry too much about your form and read too much into it.

“At the moment I feel absolutely fine, but like I’m getting close to that point where I need a week off again.”

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Lucas Bjerregaard wins Alfred Dunhill Links Championship title

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Denmark’s Lucas Bjerregaard denied Ryder Cup winner Tyrrell Hatton a third straight Alfred Dunhill Links Championship title after a storming final round at St Andrews.

Hatton had taken a four-stroke advantage into a final round which was brought forward due to the threat of high winds in the area, but it was Bjerregaard who dealt best with the conditions.

The Dane’s five-under-par 67 earned him a 15-under total of 273, enough to win by one stroke from Hatton and his fast-finishing Ryder Cup team-mate Tommy Fleetwood, whose 69 earned him a share of second place.

World number 92 Bjerregaard had claimed his only previous tour win at the Portugal Open in 2017 and he needed to produce something special on Sunday to add to that here after beginning the day playing catch-up to defending champion Hatton.

But starting on the 18th hole under the ‘shotgun’ system in which all contenders began the final round at the same time, Bjerregaard immediately reduced the deficit with a birdie.

Nevertheless Hatton also began strongly and at one point held a five-stroke advantage before falling away with four bogeys on the back nine.

Bjerregaard still faced an anxious wait after a bogey on his final hole, the 17th, but Hatton missed a birdie putt on his last which would have forced a play-off.

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Brooks Koepka "deeply hurt and saddened" by female spectator struck in the eye

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A female spectator struck in the eye by a tee shot from Brooks Koepka during the Ryder Cup says she could have died as a result of the incident.

Corine Remande was hit by a wayward shot on the par-four sixth hole at Le Golf National in Paris and there have been reports she could lose the sight in her right eye.

Mrs Remande, who had travelled to the event with her husband from their home in Egypt, told BBC Sport she could have been more seriously injured if the ball had missed her right eye and hit the side of her head.

“For me, it’s finished. I could not speak with you,” she said. “It’s so nice to be on the golf course, to see the players. I hope that with this terrible accident to improve this kind of safety for the public.

“The doctor said immediately to my husband that it was a very big explosion in my eye and it was impossible for me now to see again with this eye. I don’t know how to live with only one eye. I like walking, sport, going to the gym and playing golf.”

The BBC reported that Mrs Remande is planning legal action against Ryder Cup organisers, saying course officials did not give adequate warnings.

Koepka said in a statement on Twitter on Tuesday that he was “deeply hurt and saddened” by the incident and also addressed what happened in a press conference on Wednesday ahead of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

Corine Remande was struck by Koepka's wayward shot.

Corine Remande was struck by Koepka’s wayward shot.

“Yesterday was probably one of the worst days of my life,” Koepka said. “I haven’t had too many tragedies in my personal family where there’s been a loss or any kind of tragic accident so I’ve been lucky in that sense.

“I wasn’t told until I got to the course – I’m not the biggest person on social media – so when I got here and had about seven missed calls and 25 text messages I was like, ‘What’s going on?’. Then I was told the news and obviously I am really heartbroken. My stomach sank.

“It’s sad and I really am torn up about it.”

In Koepka’s statement on Twitter, the reigning US Open and US PGA champion said he was “heartbroken” and had been in contact with Remande’s family to offer his “heartfelt sympathy”.

The European Tour has said it will offer her “support for as long as necessary”.

A Ryder Cup spokesperson added: “Ball strikes are an occasional hazard for spectators, but this kind of incident is extremely rare. We can confirm that ‘fore’ was shouted several times, but also appreciate how hard it can be to know when and where every ball is struck if you are in the crowd.

“We are hugely sympathetic and will do everything we can to support the spectator, insofar as that is possible under very difficult circumstances.”

Europe captain Thomas Bjorn said: “It’s terrible, it’s a freak accident that’s happened, and all our thoughts are with her.”

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