Thorbjorn Olesen wins a thrilling Turkish Open

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Thorbjorn Oleson won the Turkish Airlines Open in a thrilling but nervy final round for the Dane at the beautiful Regnum Carya.

The likes of Tiger Woods, Rory Mcilroy and Patrick Reed pulled out of the first of the Race to Dubai Final Series event at a late stage, leaving many golf fans feeling this event would be rather underwhelming.

Oleson’s golf however, was far from underwhelming as he held the lead at the halfway stage at -15 thanks to a stunning 62 on Friday. He made four birdies and an eagle in his last six holes to shoot the lowest round of the week. The Dane’s six shot 36-hole lead was the biggest of the season so far.

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Oleson looked to improve his score on Saturday after this impressive round, saying: “I have to stay aggressive.”

Similarly to Friday, he picked up most of his shots with just a few holes remaining. This time shooting -2 for the last five holes to open up seven shot lead over tournament favourite Bernd Wiesberger heading into the final round.

He looked to have let it slip midway through the last round with his lead being cut to just one by David Horsey through 11 holes.

“The last four holes were tough but I managed to get it over the line,” Oleson said in his interview after the round.

The world no.68 was a surprise winner in Turkey. He has made just three cuts in his last 12 events before this win. He acknowledged his recent poor form: “The last couple of months have been pretty poor and I haven’t played well”.

This is Oleson’s fourth victory on the European Tour but is his first since the 2015 Alfred Dunhill Links in Scotland. He has also won the BMW International Open, but this is the 26 year old’s biggest win to date.

Wiesberger put on a master class with his iron play on all four days as the Austrian usually does, often finishing near the top of the leaderboard. Shortcomings with the putter meant he could only finish fourth in Turkey despite being just three shots behind Oleson with eight holes to play. This has been a familiar situation for Wiesberger recently, often chasing the leader and coming up short.

Bernd Wiesberger came up short again
Bernd Wiesberger came up short again

English hopefuls such as Tyrell Hatton and Andrew Johnston finished slightly further back with Hatton finishing in a tie for 10th and Johnston finishing in a tie for 22nd. They will be looking towards next week and hoping to possibly put up more of a challenge come the final day.

The European Tour now heads to South Africa for it’s second of three Final Series events in the Nedbank Golf Challenge. This event will feature bigger names than in Turkey with Henrik Stenson, Louis Oosthuizen, Martin Kaymer and Thomas Pieters all expected to play. Stenson will be looking to extend his lead in the Race to Dubai, especially with Rory Mcilroy skipping the event.

 

Written by Mason Mcdonagh

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