Ole­sen set for big Dubai pay day af­ter Turkey win

Great Dane is vic­to­ri­ous at the Turk­ish Air­lines Open

7 Days in Dubai - - FRONT PAGE -

Den­mark’s Thor­b­jorn Ole­sen held his nerve to win the Turk­ish Air­lines Open and in the process moved up to ninth in the Euro­pean Tour Race to Dubai rank­ings.

Ole­sen took a seven-shot lead into the fi­nal round at the Reg­num Carya Golf & Spa re­sort in An­talya, but saw that re­duced to a sin­gle shot at one stage thanks to a bril­liant scor­ing burst from Eng­land’s David Horsey.

How­ever, the 26-year-old re­sponded with vi­tal birdies on the 12th, 14th and 15th on his way to a clos­ing 69 to fin­ish 20 un­der par and claim the first prize of just over one mil­lion eu­ros.

Horsey and China’s Li Hao­tong shared sec­ond place on 17 un­der af­ter match­ing rounds of 65, with Aus­tria’s Bernd Wies­berger two shots fur­ther back in fourth.

Go­ing into the Turk­ish Air­lines Open, Ole­sen had only made three cuts of his last 12 events – sim­i­lar form to when he won the Al­fred Dun­hill Links Cham­pi­onship last year. But af­ter hold­ing on for vic­tory in Turkey, Ole­sen said: “It means a lot. The last cou­ple of months have been pretty poor and I haven’t played well and all of a sud­den you’re lead­ing by a big mar­gin and it was dif­fi­cult when you haven’t been play­ing well for that long.” When asked about his huge overnight lead, Ole­sen said: “I ac­tu­ally slept al­right the last cou­ple of days. “It was a weird feel­ing – I knew the guys were able to shoot a low num­ber so I had to make a few birdies. Af­ter nine holes guys were shoot­ing re­ally low num­bers so all of a sud­den there was a lot of pres­sure on. “I felt like I kept it pretty steady. Ob­vi­ously the last four holes were tough men­tally.”

No player has ever squan­dered a seven-shot lead af­ter 54 holes on the Euro­pean Tour, with Martin Kaymer the most re­cent to lose a six-shot ad­van­tage in last year’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Cham­pi­onship.

When Horsey three-putted the 16th af­ter leav­ing himself with a se­verely-break­ing birdie putt, Ole­sen could af­ford to drop a shot at the same hole on his way to a hard-fought fourth Euro­pean Tour ti­tle.

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