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Ancer, Ortiz put on show for home fans

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Ancer, Ortiz put on show for home fans

Two in the top 20 is best finish for host country at WGC-Mexico Championship

    Written by Cameron Morfit @CMorfitPGATOUR

    MEXICO CITY – Carlos Ortiz of Guadalajara had attended the World Golf Championship-Mexico Championship, but hadn’t qualified for it, so when he finally got the chance to play at age 28 and well into his professional career, he didn’t want to disappoint.

    After a nervous start that saw him go 5 over for his first seven holes Thursday, he did nothing of the sort, storming back from an opening-round 75 with scores of 68-66-68 to finish 7 under par and T16. Meanwhile, Abraham Ancer, who grew up in Mexico and Texas and was the breakout star of the Presidents Cup in December, also shot a final-round 68 to finish 9 under (T12).

    The previous best finish by a Mexican player here was Ancer’s T39 last year.

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    “It was a very fun week,” Ancer said. “I think I left a couple of birdies out there, but my game was quite solid. I hit it very well from the tee, and I’ve got a couple of notes on things to improve for next year, but I’m happy. Each year I’ve been able to get a little better.”

    The highlight Sunday for Ancer: stuffing his tee shot to within tap-in range at the par-3 17th, where fans chanted his nickname (Turco, or Turk) as he walked to the green.

    “I haven’t felt that feeling in other tournaments,” he said.

    Ortiz recorded the best WGC debut by a Mexican player.

    “I played well for such a bad start,” he said. “I’m happy, and very thankful to the fans and the Salinas family. The 17th hole was one of the best experiences I’ve had in golf.”

    What did he learn?

    “To be patient,” Ortiz said. “To keep working, and be confident that the results will show.”

    Cameron Morfit began covering the PGA TOUR with Sports Illustrated in 1997, and after a long stretch at Golf Magazine and joined PGATOUR.COM as a Staff Writer in 2016. Follow Cameron Morfit on Twitter.

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