Hansen third in US PGA

Golfer’s final round of 66 just one shot shy of play-off

Danish golf fans stayed up past midnight yesterday evening to watch the challenge of their countryman Anders Hansen in the US PGA, the final major tournament of the season, and he came within a whisker of making a play-off, shooting a magnificent 66 to force his way into contention.

Starting the day four shots adrift of leader Jason Dufner on -3, he matched the pace-setter shot for shot, but then dropped back a shot with a bogey at the 16th to trail the American by five.

However, Dufner started to duff his shots, while Hansen picked up a birdie at the 17th to eventually finish his round as the clubhouse leader on -7.

It was an anxious wait as he watched Dufner put together a string of bogeys to slip to -8 by the 17th, and another American, Bradley Keegan hole a massive putt on the 17th to also reach -8. In the end both players parred the last to finish one shot ahead.

Hansen’s final round of 66 was his best of the week – following a 68, 69 and 70, he was one of only four players to not register an over par round – and will help him forget the horrendous 76 he carded on the fourth day in July’s British Open after starting the final round in contention.

The new world rankings are out later today and Hansen – previously the world number 44, who is clearly enjoying the best year of his golfing life in 2011 – is expected to make the top 40 for the first time. 

Following on from Thomas Bjørn’s fourth place finish in the British Open, Danish golf is enjoying its best ever year.