Last competitive lap of the year for Jon Rahm. At the DP World Tour Championship, the Dubai World Cup, on the Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates. And a new reaction, insufficient, from the Basque, who tried everything but the 66 shots, six under par, did not give him again to put pressure on the leaders.
Rahm totaled 271 strokes (-17) and finished in fifth position, tied with the South African Lawrence and the Frenchman Pavon, far behind the winner, the Danish Nicolai Hojgaard, who wanted to put a damper on his great victory, with 267 strokes ( -21), after stringing together five consecutive birdies from holes 13 to 17 and signing a score of 64, 8 under par.
On the 18th hole he had a putt of just over a meter for birdie and seal the tournament, but he missed it. What happens is that at the same time the Englishman Tommy Fleetwood, who could be one stroke behind the Nordic and with the 18th to play, made three putts on the 17th, so Nicolai’s advantage remained two strokes.
On the 18th, Fleetwood needed an eagle-3 to qualify for the playoff, a result that he did not sign – he did not take the fairway and played from three to the green – so Hojgaard took a deep breath in the card collection booth.
Third victory in the ‘Race’ for the Dane, who ousted Jon Rahm from second place in the former Order of Merit. The Spaniard was one of the first to congratulate him when Fleetwood did not hole out his third shot for eagle in the 18th.
Jon Rahm, statements
“This means a lot, there is a lot of work behind these last few years, an incredible victory, it is a difficult moment to describe, at times I saw that the tournament was slipping away from me. I started the week with a very good feeling and to have finished this way, very proud Honestly, delighted,” Hojgaard, 22 years old and a member of the European team in the last Ryder Cup, said excitedly in the mixed zone.
Returning to Rahm, this is the last tournament of the season for the Biscayan, which puts an end to a great year, with his fifth top 5 in five participations in this closing tournament of the European Tour and with four victories in the bag, one of them of the ‘big ones’, the Augusta Masters.
The day started well for Rahm, with a birdie on the 1st, but on the 2nd, par 5, the three putts and a bogey ‘killed’ him. He then recovered with six more birdies – he missed the one on 18, where he went to the exit stream – for the aforementioned 66 strokes.
The 72 on the first day, given what we saw, has been a very heavy burden although in Jon’s favor it must be said that without displaying his best game this week he has been able to get into the top 5 of the tournament for the fifth time after achieving in Previous years three victories and a 4th place.
“Every day I’ve gotten better, especially the weekend, but today, especially at the beginning of the round, no putt wanted to go in. I understand that the Spanish want me to go further but you can’t talk about bad luck, the golf always equals you.
It has been one of those days where everything went the way I wanted or almost. In the end it is when you make a putt and the dynamic changes. But I have played good golf and it has been fun. There has been a moment when I Thought, we have to reach -20 and see if we have any luck…
It’s a shame how I ended the first day, with two bogeys,” was Rahm’s final analysis in the mixed zone to the special envoys of the portal ‘tengolf.es’ . Of the rest of the Spaniards, Adrián Otaegui rose to the top 20, Pablo Larrazábal was 34th, Jorge Campillo 43rd and Nacho Elvira 50th.
For Campillo there was a reward because his 16th final in the ‘Race’ earned him the ninth and penultimate PGA Tour card for 2024 while Larrazábal missed the top 30 by one and did not achieve a direct place for the 2024 British Open in Troon.
Along with Campillo, the following have achieved the American circuit card through the DP World Tour: Adrian Meronk, Ryan Fox, Victor Perez, Thorbjorn Olesen, Alexander Bjork, Sami Valimaki, Robert MacIntyre, Matthieu Pavon and Ryo Hisatsune. Rasmus Hojgaard was left at the doors.
Source: Tennis World USA