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Paul Casey finds European Tour’s fountain of youth

Paul Casey wins 2021 Omega Dubai Desert Classic
Paul Casey cruises to victory Sunday at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, his 15th victory on the European Tour.

43-year-old Englishman claims ‘I’ve regained my youth’ after 4-stroke victory in Omega Dubai Desert Classic, his 15th title on tour

At age 43, Paul Casey never has felt better.

The Englishman two-putted for birdie at the par-5 18th hole at Emirates Golf Club, completing a four-stroke victory Sunday in the European Tour’s Omega Dubai Desert Classic.

It was his 15th victory on the tour and his first in nearly 1½ years.

“I feel like I’ve regained my youth,” Casey said. “I mean that sincerely. I’m so happy.”

Casey cruised to a 2-under 70 and a 17-under 271 total on a course that introduced the European Tour to the Middle East in 1989 and in a United Arab Emirates nation that is celebrating its 50th anniversary.

“Dubai has been so good to the European Tour and golf around the world,” Casey said.

Casey also owns three victories on the PGA Tour. In his previous start, he tied for eighth at the PGA Tour’s The American Express. He entered the week in Dubai at No. 27 in the Official World Golf Ranking.

South Africa’s Brandon Stone finished second at 13-under 275, followed by Scotland’s Robert MacIntyre at 12-under 276. Among the challengers in the top five, only Finland’s Kalle Samooja, with a 71, broke par in the final round. He tied for fourth with England’s Laurie Canter at 10-under 278 (scores).

After a bogey-free 8-under 64 on Saturday, Casey began the final round with a one-stroke lead. He expanded it to three at the turn, despite managing only an even-par 35 on the front nine. He holed a 20-foot birdie putt at the par-3 11th, opening a five-stroke lead and setting up a comfortable finish, though Casey conceded that he didn’t realize where he stood.

“I never looked at the leaderboard until I got on the green here,” he said behind the 18th hole.

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