Justin Rose beat Li Haotong at the first hole of a sudden-death playoff to successfully defend the Turkish Airlines Open and return to Number 1 on the Official World Golf Ranking.
Justin Rose wins Turkish Airlines Open
Justin Rose won the Turkish Airlines Open at Regnum Carya Golf & Spa Resort in Antalya. The Englishman defeated China’s Li Haotong in extra holes to successfully defend the title.
Li was three in front at the start of the final round in Antalya but the Chinese player struggled early in round four and Rose found himself two in front mid-way through the back nine on Sunday.
When Li played a magnificent second shot into the par-5 15th, the resulting eagle saw him climb back into a tie with Rose at the top of the board.
The pair both bogeyed the final hole to tie on 17-under-par through 72 holes and that meant a playoff was required to settle the tournament.
Rose and Li headed back to the par-4 18th where a three-putt bogey from Li saw the Englishman secure the win. Rose was winner of this event last season and in defending the title he has returned to the top of the Official World Golf Ranking.
“It’s taken me 20 years to defend a title, I guess, so that’s great,” he said.
“I’ve had some pressure-packed Sundays of late, dare I say, coming away with consolation prizes in a way. World Number 1 after losing in a playoff, finishing fourth but winning the FedExCup. I was keenly aware I wanted to get back in the winner’s circle and it was good to get it done today. The fun thing is I still feel like there’s improvement to be had and that’s what I’m looking for. I’m really looking forward to the off-season to still work at a few things and still get better. I think that’s the exciting part, at 38 I still feel like there is improvement to be achieved. More Majors, that’s what I’m interested in, trying to chase down as many as I can.”
Li played well all week and was disappointed not to get the win.
“A tough day for me, honestly,” said Li. “The playoff, I saw that ball definitely go in. I think I played well the whole week but didn’t hole a few putts on the last day and that was it.”
Belgian Thomas Detry and Spaniard Adrian Otaegui both signed for rounds of 65 to finish two shots out of the playoff at 15-under.
Tommy Fleetwood, currently second on the Race to Dubai standings finished in a tie for seventh place. Picking up just under 200,000 points, he has closed the gap on Open champion Francesco Molinari at the top of the standings. Fleetwood will go into the DP World Tour Championship some 1,030,000 points behind the Italian.
Turkish Airlines Open
Regnum Carya Golf & Spa Resort, Antalya, Turke
Purse: $7,000,000 Par: 71
1 Justin Rose (Eng) 65 65 69 68 267 €1,025,132
2 Haotong Li (Chn) 66 67 63 71 267 €685,413
T3 Thomas Detry (Bel) 66 70 68 65 269 €347,254
T3 Adrian Otaegui (Esp) 68 65 71 65 269 €347,254
T5 Lucas Bjerregaard (Den) 70 67 66 67 270 €238,664
T5 Martin Kaymer (Ger) 66 69 69 66 270 €238,664
T7 Tommy Fleetwood (Eng) 68 66 68 69 271 €160,120
T7 Thorbjorn Olesen (Den) 65 67 68 71 271 €160,120
T7 Danny Willett (Eng) 67 65 69 70 271 €160,120
T10 Thomas Aiken (RSA) 71 65 66 70 272 €110,962
T10 Sam Horsfield (Eng) 66 67 68 71 272 €110,962
T10 Alex Levy (Fra) 67 66 66 73 272 €110,962
T10 Tapio Pulkkanen (Fin) 68 70 67 67 272 €110,962
Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage