Feb
26
2011
Hot Hand Luke Eases Past Moore Into Semis
By Stephanie Wei under European PGA Tour

Luke Donald: Matchplay specialist

Luke Donald is a force to be reckoned with in matchplay. He’s also looking for his first win on American soil *since 2006, which he’s inching closer to. Donald pummeled Ryan Moore 5&4 on Saturday morning to cruise into the semifinals of the Match Play Championship.

In the fine performance, the Englishman drained four putts outside 11 feet and holed out twice — although he lost the 11th despite the chip in because Moore made eagle. Donald carded seven birdies in 14 holes.

Moore struggled on the greens and never seemed to get his putter rolling. He gave away the ninth hole to Donald when he missed a four-footer for par. Donald took advantage of the momentum and followed with a birdie on the tenth to go five up through 10.

“I’ve been working hard and it’s nice to see the work paying off. I made a bunch of birdies and made it hard for Ryan,” Donald told Sky Sports.

“You do the same things, try and hit it close, give yourself opportunities and put pressure on your opponent.”

It’s mildly amusing to me that mild-mannered Luke is absolutely unsparing toward his opponents in matchplay.

Donald sank a nine-footer for birdie on No. 14 to close out the match. He had plenty of time to relax while he waited for the Matt Kuchar vs. Y.E. Yang match to finish. Kuchar had a chance to close out Yang on No. 16, but missed his 13-footer for birdie. He sank a four-footer on No. 17 to edge out Yang 2&1.

Donald will face Kuchar in the semis on *Saturday afternoon.

*Update

(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)