South Africa’s Christiaan Bezuidenhout cruised to a six-shot victory at the Estrella Damm N.A.Andalucia Masters in Valderrama to secure his first European Tour title.
Bezuidenhout, 25, took a five-shot lead into the final round and birdied the first two holes to go seven clear. But he bogeyed four of the next five to see his lead cut to three by playing partner Jon Rahm. But three birdies from the ninth put him back in command, and he went on to win with half-a-dozen shots in hand after a commanding weekend performance..
The South African, who moved up to 140th in the world rankings with the win, also secured a coveted place in The Open at Royal Portrush. He said: “I’m proud of myself for hanging in there today, after a tough stretch in the middle of my round. I made a great save on eight, which just kept the momentum on my side, and I bounced back with three birdies in a row. That just settled me down nicely. It’s a tough golf course, anything can happen, especially with those last three holes playing into the wind, so I’m really pleased with the way I played, and to finish it off is unbelievable.”
Rahm finished in a tie for second alongside fellow Spaniards Alvaro Quiros, Eduardo de la Riva and Adri Arnaus, as well as France’s Mike Lorenzo Vera, with tournament host Sergio Garcia a shot further back.
Andy Sullivan was the best of the British challengers, the Englishman finishing on one under. Scotland’s Scott Jamieson and the English pair of Jack Singh Brar and Steven Brown all ended on level par.
What’s in the Bag – Christiaan Bezuidenhout
Driver: Callaway Epic Flash Sub Zero 10.5°
Fairways: Callaway Epic Flash Sub Zero 15°
Utility: Callaway X Forged UT 18°
Irons: Callaway X-Forged 18, 4-PW
Wedges: Callaway Mack Daddy Forged 50°, 56°, 60°
Putter: Odyssey Works Big T #5