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Marcel Siem's Masters hopes rise after Morrocco win

Updated: Sunday, 31 Mar 2013 19:50 | Comments

Marcel Siem claimed a wire-to-wire victory in Morrocco
Marcel Siem claimed a wire-to-wire victory in Morrocco

Marcel Siem completed a wire-to-wire victory at the Hassan II Trophy in Morocco to all but confirm a debut appearance at the Masters.

Siem overcame a shaky start to the final round, when his four-shot lead was quickly erased by Mikko Ilonen, before eventually prevailing by three strokes.

Siem's third European Tour success could also be further sweetened by a first appearance at Augusta in a fortnight with victory likely to send him into the world's top 50.

That would be enough to secure an invitation to the Masters, although he will have to await the final results of tonight's Shell Houston Open before booking his flights to Georgia.

"That will be unbelievable," Siem told the European Tour's official website.

"It's been my dream since I was a kid so if that comes true it will be unbelievable. It would be wonderful to play the Masters.

"I just want to be on that ground. I'm not going to cry but it would be very emotional."

Siem's final-round 70 was his worst of the week and it looked as though disaster might strike when Ilonen, who shook off a bout of food poisoning overnight, drew level by the fourth.

Siem bogeyed the first before Ilonen secured a hat-trick of birdies from the second to suddenly put his rival's Masters dream under threat.

The German responded impressively with birdies at the fifth and seventh and the momentum turned his way irretrievably on the 11th with a birdie Ilonen could only match with a bogey.

In the end Siem signed for two-under-par 70 for the day, and a 17 under total, with Ilonen having to be content with a share of second alongside England's David Horsey after they both shot 69.

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