Gary Stal takes improbable victory at Abu Dhabi Championship

Gary Stal rallies from 10 shots back to win the Abu Dhabi Championship

Gary Stal of France came from 10 shots back to capitalize on an improbable meltdown by Martin Kaymer and win the Abu Dhabi Championship after a frantic final round on Sunday.

Kaymer looked like cruising to a fourth title in Abu Dhabi after making three birdies in his opening four holes to extend his six-stroke lead from overnight, only to drop six shots in seven holes around the turn.

The No. 357-ranked Stal pounced with six birdies from Nos. 4-11 and held himself together down the stretch, picking up another shot at the 16th to capture his first European Tour title. He shot a 7-under 65 and was 19-under 269 overall.

Kaymer shot 75 for a 17-under total and third place. When he teed off on No. 6, he was 10 shots clear on 23 under — and only a shot off his record score around the National Course.

“A little shocked, surprised,” Kaymer said. “I don't know how to put it into words.”

Top-ranked Rory McIlroy had a 66 to finish a shot behind Stal in second, where he has now placed four times in Abu Dhabi.

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