Francesco Molinari

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Francesco Molinari
Francesco Molinari.JPG
Personal information
Full name Francesco Molinari
Born (1982-11-08) 8 November 1982 (age 35)
Turin, Italy
Height 1.72 m (5 ft 8 in)
Weight 72 kg (159 lb; 11.3 st)
Nationality  Italy
Residence Turin, Italy
London, England
Spouse Valentina (m. 2007)
Children Tommaso, Emma
Career
College University of Turin
Turned professional 2004
Current tour(s) European Tour
PGA Tour
Professional wins 9
Number of wins by tour
PGA Tour 2
European Tour 6
Other 2
Best results in major championships
(wins: 1)
Masters Tournament T19: 2012
U.S. Open T23: 2014
The Open Championship Won: 2018
PGA Championship T2: 2017

Francesco Molinari (born 8 November 1982) is an Italian professional golfer. He won the 2018 Open Championship, his first major victory, and the first major won by an Italian professional golfer.[1] The Open Championship win capped a successful season in which he won the 2018 BMW PGA Championship, his sixth win on the European Tour, and the Quicken Loans National, his first PGA Tour win.

Molinari has been in the top 100 of the World Rankings continuously since the end of 2008. Playing with his brother Edoardo, they won the 2009 Omega Mission Hills World Cup, Italy's only win in the event. Molinari won the 2010 WGC-HSBC Champions and has represented Europe in two winning Ryder Cup teams, in 2010 and 2012.

Background and amateur career[edit]

Molinari was born in Turin, Italy, and is the younger brother of Edoardo Molinari. As an amateur, he won the Italian Amateur Stroke Play Championship twice, and the Italian Match Play Championship in 2004. He turned professional later that year.

Professional career[edit]

Molinari earned his European Tour card for 2005 through qualifying school. He finished in 86th place on the tour's Order of Merit in his rookie season.

In May 2006, Molinari claimed his first European Tour victory, becoming the first Italian since Massimo Mannelli in 1980 to win the Telecom Italia Open.[2] This victory helped him finish 38th on the Order of Merit. Molinari didn't win on Tour between 2007 and 2009 but during that time he recorded twenty top-10 finishes including three runner-up finishes. He finished 60th on the Order of Merit in 2007, 24th in 2008 and 14th in the Race to Dubai in 2009. In October 2009, Molinari reached the top 50 of the Official World Golf Ranking for the first time.

On 29 November 2009, Molinari, along with his older brother Edoardo, led Italy to their first World Cup victory at the Omega Mission Hills World Cup in China.[3]

On 7 November 2010, Molinari won the WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai, China. He defeated Lee Westwood by one stroke, finishing at 19-under par.[4] The win moved him into 14th in the Official World Golf Ranking, his highest ranking for eight years. He also recorded eleven top-10 finishes including two runner-up finishes en route to a 5th-place finish in the Race to Dubai.

In October 2010, he represented Europe in the 2010 Ryder Cup which took place at Celtic Manor Resort, teaming up with his brother Edoardo in the four-balls (halved against Stuart Cink and Matt Kuchar) and foursomes (lost against Zach Johnson and Hunter Mahan). He then lost the singles match by 4 and 3 against Tiger Woods on the final day. Europe defeated the United States 14½–13½.

Molinari had a steady 2011 without any further victories but did record seven top-10 finishes, including a 3rd place at the WGC-Cadillac Championship. He finished the year ranked 21st in the Race to Dubai.

Molinari picked up his third win on the European Tour on 6 May 2012 at the Reale Seguros Open de España. He was four strokes out of the lead going into the final round but fired a 65 (−7), the best round of the tournament, to win by three strokes over Alejandro Cañizares, Søren Kjeldsen and Pablo Larrazábal.[5] In July 2012, the week before the Open Championship, Molinari lost in a playoff at the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open. He was defeated on the first playoff hole by Jeev Milkha Singh.

Molinari gained an automatic selection for the 2012 Ryder Cup, where he played the foursomes with Lee Westwood on Friday, losing by 3 and 2 to Jason Dufner and Zach Johnson; he then teamed up in the four-balls with Justin Rose, losing by 5 and 4 against Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson. On the final day, he halved with Tiger Woods in the last singles match. The point meant Europe not only completed a comeback from 10–6 down at the start of the final day to retain the cup, but won it outright by a score of 14½ points to 13½.[6]

During the 2013 and 2014 seasons Molinari didn't register any win, but his steady position in the top fifty of the OWGR allowed him to play several PGA Tour events as a non-member, where he reached three top ten finishes; among these the most prestigious result was the 6th place at the 2014 Players Championship. These results allowed him to earn a full PGA Tour card for the 2014–15 season.

In 2015 and 2016 Molinari shared his time between the European Tour and PGA Tour. In September 2016 he became the first Italian to win his national open twice with a 1 shot victory over Danny Willett at the 2016 Italian Open. Other notable results in Europe were the 2nd places collected at the 2015 Open de España and 2016 Open de France, while in the U.S. he collected a 3rd place at the 2015 Memorial Tournament. In the same year he also recorded a hole in one at the iconic 16th hole of the Waste Management Phoenix Open.[7]

Molinari recorded his fifth European Tour win and first Rolex Series titles in May 2018, with victory in the European Tour's flagship event, the BMW PGA Championship. He produced a flawless final round to see off Rory McIlroy by two strokes. The win took Molinari level with Costantino Rocca, for most European Tour wins by an Italian. In the same year, Molinari won the Quicken Loans National in a dominating fashion by shooting a 62 on Sunday to win by eight strokes, the first PGA Tour win for an Italian since 1947.

At the 2018 Open Championship, Molinari won the tournament with a score of −8, pairing with Tiger Woods in the final round.[1] The win at the Open Championship moved him to sixth place in the Official World Golf Ranking, the highest ranking of his career to date.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Molinari is a fan of Italian football team Internazionale,[9] he also supported West Ham United after Italian football manager Gianfranco Zola started managing the East London side in 2008.[10]

Amateur wins (5)[edit]

  • 2002 Italian Amateur Stroke Play Championship, Italian Amateur Foursomes Championship (with Edoardo Molinari)
  • 2004 Italian Amateur Stroke Play Championship, Italian Match Play Championship, Sherry Cup (ESP)

Professional wins (9)[edit]

PGA Tour wins (2)[edit]

Legend
Major championships (1)
Other PGA Tour events (1)
No. Date Tournament Winning score To par Margin of
victory
Runner(s)-up
1 1 Jul 2018 Quicken Loans National 67-65-65-62=259 −21 8 strokes United States Ryan Armour
2 22 Jul 2018 The Open Championship 70-72-65-69=276 −8 2 strokes United States Kevin Kisner, Northern Ireland Rory McIlroy,
England Justin Rose, United States Xander Schauffele

European Tour wins (6)[edit]

Legend
Major championships (1)
World Golf Championships (1)
BMW PGA Championships (1)
Other European Tour (3)
No. Date Tournament Winning score To par Margin of
victory
Runner(s) up
1 7 May 2006 Telecom Italia Open 68-65-67-65=265 −23 4 strokes Denmark Anders Hansen, Sweden Jarmo Sandelin
2 7 Nov 2010 WGC-HSBC Champions 65-70-67-67=269 −19 1 stroke England Lee Westwood
3 6 May 2012 Reale Seguros Open de España 70-71-74-65=280 −8 3 strokes Spain Alejandro Cañizares, Denmark Søren Kjeldsen,
Spain Pablo Larrazábal
4 18 Sep 2016 Italian Open (2) 65-68-64-65=262 −22 1 stroke England Danny Willett
5 27 May 2018 BMW PGA Championship 70-67-66-68=271 −17 2 strokes Northern Ireland Rory McIlroy
6 22 Jul 2018 The Open Championship 70-72-65-69=276 −8 2 strokes United States Kevin Kisner, Northern Ireland Rory McIlroy,
England Justin Rose, United States Xander Schauffele

European Tour playoff record (0–3)

No. Year Tournament Opponent(s) Result
1 2008 UBS Hong Kong Open Taiwan Lin Wen-tang, Northern Ireland Rory McIlroy Lin won with birdie on second extra hole
Molinari eliminated with par on first hole
2 2010 Alstom Open de France Spain Alejandro Cañizares, Spain Miguel Ángel Jiménez Jiménez won with par on first extra hole
3 2012 Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open India Jeev Milkha Singh Lost to birdie on first extra hole

Other wins (2)[edit]

Major championships[edit]

Wins (1)[edit]

Year Championship 54 holes Winning score Margin Runners-up
2018 The Open Championship 3 shot deficit −8 (70-72-65-69=276) 2 strokes United States Kevin Kisner, Northern Ireland Rory McIlroy,
England Justin Rose, United States Xander Schauffele

Results timeline[edit]

Tournament 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Masters Tournament T30 CUT T19 CUT 50 T33 T20
U.S. Open T27 CUT CUT T29 CUT T23 T27 CUT T25
The Open Championship CUT T13 CUT CUT T39 T9 T15 T40 T36 CUT 1
PGA Championship T10 T33 T34 T54 T33 T58 T54 T22 T2 T6
  Winner
  Top 10
  Did not play

CUT = missed the half-way cut
"T" = tied

Summary[edit]

Tournament Wins 2nd 3rd Top-5 Top-10 Top-25 Events Cuts made
Masters Tournament 0 0 0 0 0 2 7 5
U.S. Open 0 0 0 0 0 2 9 5
The Open Championship 1 0 0 1 2 4 11 7
PGA Championship 0 1 0 1 3 4 10 10
Totals 1 1 0 2 5 12 37 27
  • Most consecutive cuts made – 12 (2013 Open – 2017 Masters)
  • Longest streak of top-10s – 2 (2018 Open – 2018 PGA, current)

World Golf Championships[edit]

Wins (1)[edit]

Year Championship 54 holes Winning score Margin of victory Runner-up
2010 WGC-HSBC Champions 1 shot lead −19 (65-70-67-67=269) 1 stroke England Lee Westwood

Results timeline[edit]

Results not in chronological order prior to 2015.

Tournament 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Mexico Championship T14 T3 T13 T28 T25 T20 T25
Match Play R64 R64 R32 R64 R64 T34 T58 T17
Bridgestone Invitational T39 T15 T40 T44 T31 T61 T24 T39
HSBC Champions T10 1 T23 T39 T21 T6 T46
  Win
  Top 10
  Did not play

QF, R16, R32, R64 = Round in which player lost in match play
"T" = Tied

PGA Tour career summary[edit]

Season Starts Cuts
made
Wins 2nd 3rd Top
10
Top
25
Earnings
($)
Money
list rank
2007 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 n/a
2008 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 n/a
2009 4 4 0 0 0 1 2 304,368 n/a
2010 8 6 0 0 0 1 2 358,196 n/a
2011 11 6 0 0 1 1 3 158,387 n/a
2012 8 7 0 0 0 0 3 198,961 n/a
2013 9 6 0 0 0 1 1 245,463 n/a
2014 12 12 0 0 0 2 7 847,974 n/a
2015 16 13 0 0 1 2 5 997,389 103
2016 18 14 0 0 0 3 5 1,083,155 98
2017 21 17 0 1 0 5 14 2,875,850 31
Career* 108 85 0 1 2 16 42 7,069,745 229[11]

*As of the 2016–17 season.[12]
^ Molinari became member of the PGA Tour in 2015, so he is not included in the money list before that.

Team appearances[edit]

Amateur

Professional

Ryder Cup points record

2010 2012 Total
0.5 0.5 1

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Murray, Scott (22 July 2018). "The Open 2018: Francesco Molinari wins title on day of drama – as it happened". The Guardian. 
  2. ^ "Molinari ends wait for home win". BBC Sport. 7 May 2006. Retrieved 13 April 2009. 
  3. ^ "Italy edge Ireland to win World Cup of Golf in China". BBC Sport. 29 November 2009. Retrieved 30 November 2009. 
  4. ^ "Francesco Molinari holds his nerve to see off Lee Westwood in China". The Guardian. 7 November 2010. Retrieved 9 November 2010. 
  5. ^ "Magic Final Round Secures Title for Molinari". European Tour. 6 May 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2012. 
  6. ^ "Europe seal Ryder Cup win with comeback of epic proportions". The Guardian. 1 October 2012. Retrieved 3 October 2012. 
  7. ^ "Francesco Molinari's hole-in-one on No. 16 at Waste Management". 31 January 2015. Retrieved 17 September 2016. 
  8. ^ Hodgetts, Rob (23 July 2018). "Francesco Molinari wins British Open as Tiger Woods falls short". CNN.com. Retrieved 23 July 2018. 
  9. ^ "Francesco Molinari porta l'Inter sul green" (in Italian). 
  10. ^ "Hammer Francesco eyes Open glory". 12 June 2014. Archived from the original on 14 June 2014. 
  11. ^ "Career Money Leaders". PGA Tour. Retrieved 26 September 2017. 
  12. ^ "Francesco Molinari". PGA Tour. Retrieved 26 September 2017. 

External links[edit]