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Stuart Appleby wins in Melbourne, Tiger Woods fourth

Australian Masters final leaderboard: -10 S Appleby (Aus) -9 A Bland (Aus) -8 D Gaunt (Aus) -7 T Woods (US) -6 A Stoltz, J Lyle (both Aus)

Stuart Appleby
Appleby's previous win on home soil had been back in 2001

Stuart Appleby produced a birdie-birdie finish on 10 under and snatch the Australian Masters by one stroke from Adam Bland, with Tiger Woods fourth.

Daniel Gaunt finished on eight under to complete an all-Australian top three, but Woods' 65 was the joint best of the day as he finished three shots back.

Appleby's win was his first on home soil since the 2001 Australian Open.

He began the day trailing leader Bland by seven strokes, and only hit the front with his birdie at the 17th.

It was Appleby's second storming finish this year after carding a closing 11-under 59 to claim the Greenbrier Classic on the USPGA tour in August.

"I went into today with the feeling that I had to try and somehow find a way to get close enough to the leaders where it might make them change the way they were playing," revealed the 39-year-old.

Some of the things I am working on are starting to gel but unfortunately not for the entire round, they are sporadic

Tiger Woods

"I did use that experience of shooting 59 to try and put myself in that mood of trying to apply some pressure and to see what happens.

"To have a win in August and now this one really wraps this year up in a nice bow for me."

Bland, who had led from the opening round, could not handle the pressure in the closing 18 holes and his three-stroke buffer melted away in a flurry of five bogeys in his two-over 73 to finish at nine-under 275.

Appleby shot the same final day score as Woods, who strode from the final green with cheers ringing in his ears as he peeled off two eagles and two birdies in his closing six holes to finish with rounds of 69-72-71-65 for a seven-under total of 277.

The rousing finish lifted Woods' spirits after a frustrating week and gave him renewed confidence in his attempt to break his tournament drought this year at next month's final Chevron World Challenge tournament in California.

"I have two weeks off and then play the Chevron so I am pretty excited about it," Woods said.

"Some of the things I am working on are starting to gel but unfortunately not for the entire round, they are sporadic.

"So I'll do some more work when I get back home."

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see also
Woods' title defence all but over
13 Nov 10 |  Golf
Garcia shines as Woods struggles
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Woods four off lead in Australia
11 Nov 10 |  Golf
Don't write off Tiger - Westwood
01 Nov 10 |  Golf
Garcia to miss out on Ryder Cup
14 Aug 10 |  Golf
Garcia to take a two-month break
08 Aug 10 |  Golf
Golf on the BBC
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