Westwood Wins With Flair, Remains No. 1 and Celebrates Properly
By Stephanie Wei under European PGA Tour

Westwood celebrates chipping in from fringe for a birdie and the win

Lee Westwood chipped in for a birdie on No. 18 to shoot a final-round 68 for a eight-shot victory over Tim Clark at the 12-man Nedbank Golf Challenge in South Africa. With the win, Westwood takes home $1.25 million and enough world ranking points to retain the No. 1 world ranking for the rest of 2010.

“I think that’s the first time I’ve chipped in all year,” Westwood said. “It’s what you call a grandstand finish. It was a good time to do it.”

If there’s any part of Westwood’s game that’s considered less than excellent, it’s his chipping. But obviously, it’s still good enough since he’s No. 1 in the world. (He just hits a lot of greens, too!)

Westwood posted rounds of 68, 64 and 71 before closing Sunday with five birdies and a bogey.

“I don’t think it would have been possible to catch Lee today,” said Clark. “There’s no question he is the world’s No. 1. It’s not just points on a sheet. I think he has that belief right now.”

With Tiger Woods holding a commanding lead at the Chevron World Challenge, Westwood needed to place no worse than second to hold onto the top spot in the rankings.

“It (the No. 1 ranking) is something that I’m still coming to terms with,” Westwood said. “But since I’ve become No. 1 I’ve finished second (HSBC Champions), third (Dubai World Championship) and first. So, I think I can cope with it.”

According to Westwood’s Twitter feed, he’s celebrating the victory with booze. First, he tweeted this gem, with the caption, “Breaking news! I’m falling off the wagon! Whooooooooo!!”

A few hours later, it appears he’s moved onto beers at the pub. Westy tweeted, “Need I say more?”

What a beauty. For some reason, I doubt Tiger’s post-win tweets tonight will be as lively. Prediction? “@TigerWoods: Feels good to win again! It’s a process!’

(Top photo via AP/Themba Hadebe)