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Green captures Canadian crown

AUSTRALIAN Nathan Green ended a gloomy week in brilliant style by beating South African Retief Goosen on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff to win the 100th Canadian Open in Ontario on Monday.

After four days of rain and thunderstorms and lightning forced the US$5.1 million tournament to a Monday finish, the skies finally cleared over Glen Abbey where Green fended off a late challenge from twice-US Open champion Goosen to claim his maiden PGA Tour win.

Goosen rolled in a 15-foot eagle putt on the last hole of regulation play to join Green at 18-under and put pressure firmly back on the 34-year-old Australian, who still had two to play.

Green, who twice birdied and eagled the 18th in earlier rounds, could not hold his nerve and settled for par to send the tournament to a playoff.

Having seen his first chance at a Tour victory disappear with a playoff loss to Tiger Woods at the 2006 Buick Invitational, the Australian would not be denied at Glen Abbey, and tapped in for par at the 17th to secure the title on the second playoff hole.

"I've been in that similar situation before at Torrey Pines my first season out (and) I had a playoff with Tiger and another two guys you don't want to be in a playoff with," Green told reporters.

"But I was definitely a bit calmer in today's playoff than I was then. I think I learned a little bit."

Green started his charge early in the morning, with an eagle on the par five 18th to close out his rain-delayed third round then rode the momentum into the final round carding a bogey-free four-under 68 for a total of 18-under 270.

But an error-free scorecard was not enough to hold off Goosen, who hit back with a timely eagle at 18 to set up the dramatic finish after nearly throwing away the tournament with back-to-back bogeys at 14 and 15.

Americans Anthony Kim and Jason Dufner shared the lead with Goosen heading into the fourth round but could not keep pace and finished with a pair of one-over 73s to drop back into a tie for third at 14-under 274.


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