Fichardt coasts to Sao Paulo title

ESPN Golf Online news services
Sunday, March 25

SAO PAULO, Brazil -- Darren Fichardt won the Sao Paulo Brazil Open by five strokes Sunday to collect his first victory on the European Tour.

 Darren Fichardt
A second-round 61 put Darren Fichardt is position to win.
Fichardt, whose wife was his caddie, finished with a 4-under 67 for an 18-under 195 total, a new record for a 54-hole tournament at the 6,529-yard Sao Paulo Golf Club.

The tournament was reduced to three rounds after play was interrupted for three straight days by lightning and rain.

Fichardt had completed his second round Friday and did not have to lift a club on Saturday.

Brett Rumford, who tied for second with Jose Coceres and Richard S. Johnson, got to within a shot of the leader by the sixth hole, but Fichardt pulled clear again with steady, percentage golf.

"If the other guys caught up with me I would have had to change the game plan," Fichardt said. "I just told myself to keep the ball on the fairway and hit the greens. The safe way worked well."