February 27 2011
MARANA, Ariz. -- Luke Donald upset top-seeded Martin Kaymer 3 and 2 to win the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship on Sunday.
With the victory, Donald climbs from ninth to a career-high third in the Official World Golf Ranking. His previous best was sixth last fall after the St. Jude Classic presented by Smith & Nephew.
“It’s hard to put into words right now (what this means to me),” Donald said “It certainly is some, I guess, pay back for all the hard work I have done. I have a lot of people to thank.”
Donald never trailed in any of his six matches this week and needed just 73 holes to reach the final, beating Tiger Woods’ record of 77 set in 2003. His Accenture Match Play Championship record has improved to 16-10.
"It couldn't have gone any better -- not to get to the 18th hole in any match this week and pretty much go through reasonably stress-free," Donald said. "I played solid this week. It's nice to get the victory."
Kaymer, of course, had already assured himself of the No. 1 spot when he reached the championship match. The top four players in world are all Europeans for the first time since 1992.
Kaymer called Donald “a very tough opponent. I just didn't play as good as I did the last few days.”
The victory was Donald's first on the PGA TOUR in just under five years and the third of his career. His last win came in 2006 at The Honda Classic, which will be played next week at PGA National.
Donald earned 550 FedExCup points and $1.4 million with the victory. He'll have a nice blue Wedgewood trophy, the Walter Hagen Cup, to take home with him, as well.
Kaymer wins $850,000 for finishing second. The reigning PGA champion will not receive FedExCup points because he is not a PGA TOUR member this year.