HSBC Champions 2012: Ian Poulter Shows Great Resolve in Tournament Win

Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistNovember 4, 2012

SHENZHEN, CHINA - NOVEMBER 04:  Ian Poulter of England poses with the trophy beside HSBC's Peter Wong (R) after winning the WGC HSBC Champions during the final round at the Mission Hills Resort on November 4, 2012 in Shenzhen, China.  (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Andrew Redington/Getty Images

Ian Poulter has already had a great year, but things just seem to be getting better for the English golfer.

In 2012, Poulter saved his best performances for the biggest stage.

He finished in the top 10 in three of the four major championships, finishing as high as third in the PGA Championships. He then helped lead Europe to a Ryder Cup victory with a 4-0 personal record throughout the event. 

This week, however, he earned his biggest paycheck of the year with a win at the HSBC Championship.

Poulter earned $1.2 million by shooting 21 strokes under par for the weekend at Mission Hills Golf Course in Shenzhen, China. He finished every round in the 60s and ended two strokes ahead of Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els, Jason Dufner and Scott Piercy.

However, the tournament was not always easy. He was nine strokes off the leader Louis Oosthuizen after two rounds. Still, Poulter stayed focused and ended with back-to-back impressive rounds of 65.

On Sunday, the Englishman was almost flawless. He had only one bogey on 17, but that did not cancel out his eight birdies that gave him enough breathing room to hold on. The golfer also had a great save from the sand on the final hole to clinch the win.

This is Poulter's second career win at a World Golf Championship event. He also won the 2010 Accenture Match Play Championship with a 4 and 2 win over Paul Casey in the finals.

Although these tournaments do not receive the same publicity as the major championships, the prize money is often bigger and the fields are usually just as good. This type of victory should give golfers confidence and fuel them towards more success.  

Despite the fact that this is only his first victory of the season, Poulter should be able to use this win, as well as his performance at the Ryder Cup, to have a big year in 2013.