1996 Doral-Ryder Open
Doral Golf Resort
Miami, Florida
February 29-March 3, 1996

Norman Takes Third Title in Seven Years at Doral

1996 Doral-Ryder Open

Greg Norman caught fire on the back nine and pulled away for his third victory in seven years at the $1.8 million Doral Open, a two-stroke triumph at the Doral Resort and Country Club in Miami.

Norman, who returned to the PGA Tour this week for the first time in two months, shot a 6-under-par 66 to capture his 16th career PGA Tour victory and fourth in nine months. His 72-hole total of 19-under 269 is the second best in tournament history behind his own 265 in 1993.

The 41-year-old Australian who plays out of nearby Hobe Sound, Fla., was tied with Vijay Singh of Fiji after completing his third round this morning. Norman fell behind briefly before collecting five birdies in an eight-hole stretch on the back nine. He stumbled only with a bogey at the 18th.

“It was a really satisfying win because I wasn’t playing the way I want to play,” he said. “I hit the ball OK, but it wasn’t crisp. I have a lot to work on before April. A win is great, but to win comingback on the back nine with five birdies is great. When I made the turn I told myself, ‘You have to shoot 32 or 33 to win,’ and I did.”

The victory was worth $324,000 and rocketed Norman into second place on the PGA money list with $344,000. Phil Mickelson, who finished a distant 38th today, remains the leader with $611,570.

Norman has five top-10 finishes in eight appearances at the Doral.

“I feel comfortable here,” he said. “I’m comfortable on the greens and on the tees. I’ve played it in all wind directions. I love the layout. It makes you use every aspect of your game.”

Michael Bradley and Singh were tied for second at 17-under 271. Bradley matched Norman’s 66, while Singh shot a 4-under 68.

The second-place tie was Bradley’s best in four years on the PGA Tour, although he has won twice in Canada.

“I’m really pleased with the way I played,” he said. “I’m proud of myself. Surprisingly, I was not nervous this weekend. It was strange to be in the position I was in and to be calm. Every time I looked back, Norman was making birdies. I was running out of holes. I’m just proud I hung in with the best in the world.”

Singh also gave credit to Norman.

“Greg played great,” he said. “His short game is incredible. He didn’t outplay me, he outputted me.”

Fulton Allem and Jerry Kelly shared fourth place at 274. Allem fired a 66, while Kelly, the leading money-winner on the Nike Tour last year, had a 67.

Jay Haas and Joe Ozaki were six shots off the pace at 13-under 275. Haas shot 67 and Ozaki managed a 70.

The field included the top 10 money-winners of 1995, marking the first time all season they gathered for a single event. The Doral Open also was the first of four tournaments that will be played in Florida through the end of the month.

The Doral also is the traditional starting point for golfers as they begin preparing for the Masters, which begins April 11th.

The par-72 Doral Resort and Country Course measures 6,939 yards.