Friday 19 January 2018

wu sparkles to create some golfing history

China's Wu Ashun claimed his second European Tour title after a roller-coaster final round of the Lyoness Open in Austria.

Wu (pictured) carded a closing 69 at the Diamond Country Club to finish 13 under par and a shot ahead of his playing partner Adrian Otaegui, with England's Richard McEvoy in third.

Wu (30) was the first Chinese player to win on home soil when he lifted the Volvo China Open title last year and is the first Chinese player to win on European soil and the first to win twice on the European Tour.

"I am very happy right now," Wu said. "It was a very exciting finish and I still cannot believe it but my playing partners were really good and the scores were very close."

After starting the day a shot behind South Africa's Zander Lombard, Wu surged into a three-shot lead thanks to five birdies and a bogey in a front nine of 32.

However, that lead lasted just two holes as the world number 222 found water with his approach to the 10th to card a double bogey and then bogeyed the 11th after failing to get up and down from a greenside bunker.

That left him tied with McEvoy and Otaegui on 11 under before McEvoy took advantage of the tee being brought forward on the 13th by setting up a two-putt birdie.

The final group of Wu, Otaegui and Lombard all played safe on the same hole, but Wu pitched to eight feet and holed for birdie to join McEvoy in the lead, with Lombard converting from twice the distance to remain a shot behind.

Wu regained the outright lead with a birdie on the par-five 15th, where his approach almost span back into the hole, but Otaegui birdied the same hole and also the 16th to join his playing partner on 13 under.

However, Otaegui then failed to save par from short of the 17th green and with McEvoy dropping his only shot of the day on the 18th, Wu was left with a one-shot lead with one hole to play and safely made par after Otaegui narrowly missed his birdie attempt.

Irish Independent

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