Donaldson ends win drought with Irish Open triumph
July 1, 2012 -- Updated 2227 GMT (0627 HKT)
Jamie Donaldson won his first European Tour event at the 255th attempt on Sunday winning the Irish Open at Royal Portrush
- Welshman claims maiden European Tour win at 255th attempt at Irish Open on Sunday
- The 36-year-old Donaldson finishes on 18-under par to claim €333,330 first prize at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland
- England's Anthony Wall finishes in a tie for second; Padraig Harrington's challenge fades with final round 70
- Rory McIlroy posts final round 67 to finish in tie for 11th
(CNN) -- Jamie Donaldson claimed the first European Tour title of his career with a resounding four-stroke victory at the Irish Open on Sunday.
The Welshman made sure of his first win in 255 attempts with a closing six-under par round of 66 at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland -- the first time the event has taken place north of the border since 1953.
"I guess it takes some people longer than others, and it's taken me a lot longer than I thought to win," Donaldson said.
"The first three years went too quickly and then I was out for a year with injury, so I didn't find my feet too soon after that, and then I lost my way a bit. But over the last two to three years I feel as though I have been building to this win and it's just so nice to be finally holding this trophy," he added.
The 36-year-old started his final round trailing Sweden's Mikael Lundberg who set off at a blistering pace going out in 29 strokes.
But Donaldson immediately set about reclaiming his overnight lead, bagging three birdies in the opening four holes to set the tone for the rest of an assured final round.
I guess it takes some people longer than others, and it's taken me a lot longer than I thought to win
A bogey four at the par three 11th hole was followed by birdies at the 12th, 14th and 15th holes.
Another bogey at the 16th failed to unnerve Donaldson who closed out like a champion birdieing the closing two holes to finish the week on 18-under par.
Donaldson, who pocketed a winner's check of €333,330, finished four shots clear of England's Anthony Wall, Rafa Cabrera-Bello from Spain and Paraguay's Fabrizio Zanotti in second.
Wall, who was paired with Donaldson during Sunday's round, paid tribute to the Welshman afterwards.
"I've never doubted him. He's a class act and a super, super player, and he deserves everything he gets because he does work hard and he's got loads of talent," Wall said, EuropeanTour.com reported.
Hopes of an Irish winner faded on Sunday when Padraig Harrington could only manage a closing round of 70 to finish six shots adrift of Donaldson in tie for seventh place with Scotland's Craig Lee (68) and David Drysdale (66).
Rory McIlroy had too much ground to make up on the final day but finished with a bogey-free round of 67 to claim a share of 10th place on 11-under par.
Part of complete coverage on
July 9, 2014 -- Updated 1218 GMT (2018 HKT)
The next generation of golfers just keeps on getting younger. "They have the confidence to perform against their idols," says one ex-prodigy.
July 1, 2014 -- Updated 1159 GMT (1959 HKT)
He was Spain's ultimate matador and golf's greatest escape artist.
June 18, 2014 -- Updated 1536 GMT (2336 HKT)
Two-time major champion Rory McIlroy declares he'll represent Ireland at the Rio Olympics, not Great Britain.
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 0248 GMT (1048 HKT)
Already admired by Annika Sorenstam and with a bucketful of talent, New Zealand's Lydia Ko has the world of golf at her feet.
April 28, 2014 -- Updated 1130 GMT (1930 HKT)
Like footie? Partial to a bit of golf? Then you'll love FootGolf. The sport's growing fan base includes a host of former English Premier League stars.
April 24, 2014 -- Updated 1343 GMT (2143 HKT)
A runaway ostrich-like bird hiding near an English golf course has caused quite a stir. Some say it's dangerous, while others are cashing in.
April 22, 2014 -- Updated 1238 GMT (2038 HKT)
Eagles may be thin on the ground for most golfers at the Bear Trace course at Harrison Bay. But up in the treetops, it's a different matter.
April 18, 2014 -- Updated 1754 GMT (0154 HKT)
When someone tells you to go jump in a lake, sometimes it's best to take their advice. "I've never been so scared," says golfer Pablo Larrazabal.
Bubba Watson is the Masters king, but can he win a major away from Augusta? Living Golf's Shane O'Donoghue has the lowdown.
April 15, 2014 -- Updated 1412 GMT (2212 HKT)
Arnold Palmer won his first major at Augusta, played there with the U.S. President and made a record 50 consecutive Masters appearances.
April 10, 2014 -- Updated 1202 GMT (2002 HKT)
He is remembered for designing one of the world's most famous golf courses, but the man behind Augusta died pleading to be paid.
April 10, 2014 -- Updated 1004 GMT (1804 HKT)
Take a trip around Augusta. From Eisenhower's toppled tree to the fiendishly-difficult Amen Corner, the Masters' home venue has it all.
Today's five most popular stories