BMW Championship: Justin Rose seals win in Chicago

Justin Rose celebrates after sinking the winning putt on the 18th green
Rose celebrates after sinking the winning putt on the 18th green

Justin Rose has sealed his place at the Tour Championship in Atlanta by winning the BMW Championship on the PGA Tour.

Rose, 31, chipped in for birdie on the 17th hole and hung on to win, finishing with an even-par 71 at Cog Hill, near Chicago, for a two-shot victory.

The Englishman had watched a five-shot lead over John Senden shrink to one until the birdie chip gave him the cushion for a third PGA Tour title.

Rose played bravely and later admitted: "I took on a few crazy shots."

The world number 17 added: "The manner in which I won this tournament, it rates as high as the best tournament I've ever won, just by going wire-to-wire.

"I think mentally this is the best I've ever been in terms of being very under control with my emotions, being very calm, being very aware of the situation and feeling comfortable with it.

"I may have had better ball striking weeks as a whole but I think this week as a competitor and as a professional, I think it was probably my best ever performance."

Having started his round nervously, with a bogey at the par-three second, Rose got back on track with birdies on the sixth and seventh.

Another bogey followed on the ninth and he was fortunate to escape with a six on the par-five 15th after a wayward tee-shot which flew into the trees.

He held a one-shot advantage over Senden going up the 17th but, after a poor approach, a wonderful holed chip for birdie effectively handed him the title with Senden only managing a par after putting his second shot in the bunker.

Rose admitted former European Tour professional Mark Roe deserved some credit for his birdie on the 17th.

"Roe has given me a couple of simple keys and a simple understanding of doing, I guess, what I did as a kid again," said Rose, who turned professional at age 18 the day after finishing fourth as an amateur at the 1998 Open.

"For some reason I got myself in a bit of a mess with my short game, I was way too open to the shot, squared up my shoulders and it's been a lot better for sure.

"And I think I proved it down the stretch. I missed a couple of greens and I scrambled pretty nicely when I had to.

Rose, who climbed to third in the FedEx Cup play-off standings ahead of next week's Tour Championship finale, added: "I nearly took the chicken stick out [on the 17th] and putted it but I said to myself it was a makeable chip so I had to commit."

Senden was the model of consistency with birdies on the ninth and 10th his only deviation from par. The Australian finished a shot ahead of countryman Geoff Ogilvy, who carded a closing 69.

World number one Luke Donald ended another impressive week by coming fourth courtesy of a 68, which contained three birdies on the back nine.

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