Matt Fitzpatrick surges into standalone lead at Dubai Desert Classic

Matt Fitzpatrick believes hard work over his Christmas break is paying off after he took the overnight lead at the Dubai Desert Classic.

By Liam Hoden
Thursday, 24 January, 2019, 13:26
Matt Fitzpatrick

The Sheffield golfer fired his lowest opening round score for four years, carding a brilliant 65 which included four consecutive birdies to conclude the round and finish on seven under par.

"It was obviously a great finish to the round,” the 25-year-old told Sky Sports.

“A couple of things that I've been doing in the off-season sort of looked to have paid off a little bit.

"I just added a bit of extra length to my driver, so it's given me a few yards to help get on in two on the last because I've never been able to do that.

“And then, just wedging it a lot better has given me a few more chances coming in.

"I do like the golf course. It's tough, you've got to hit fairways, you've got to hit greens and I think it does suit my game if I'm playing well. 

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"So it's nice to be able to get off to a good start and three more rounds like that would be nice."

Opening with a birdie, his front nine was tame in comparison with the back, adding another birdie and a single bogey to his scorecard.

But he surged after the turn, carding six birdies in a superb finish.

Fitzpatrick kicked his 2019 campaign off last week with a fourth placed finish at the Singapore Open, showing superb consistency and producing two rounds without a single bogey.

Danny Willett is competed at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego.