ZANDVOORT, Netherlands, Sept 14, (Agencies): New dad Paul Casey shot a four-under 66 Sunday to win the KLM Open at 14 under, a single shot ahead of fellow Englishman Simon Dyson. Casey’s win came less than two weeks after his partner gave birth to their first son. “First tournament as a dad and first win as a dad,” Casey said after his victory at the Kennemer Golf & Country Club. Casey looked to be cruising to victory before recording his only bogey of the day at the par-three 15th. He followed that with a wild tee shot on the 16th but his second shot out of the rough landed wide and bounced onto the green, giving him two putts for par.
Dyson, looking for his fourth KLM Open title, birdied the 18th to move within a shot of the lead, but Casey comfortably closed out with pars on the 17th and 18th for his 13th European Tour title. Andy Sullivan completed an all-English top three, thanks in part to a hole-in-one on the 15th which won him a 100,000-euro seat on a commercial flight into space offered by a sponsor.
Casey set up his win with a blistering 62 on Saturday, when he came within inches of the European Tour’s first ever 59. An eagle on his final hole, the par-four ninth, would have meant a 59 and his second shot narrowly missed the cup before spinning off the green and leading to a bogey. Casey began Sunday’s round four shots behind overnight leader Romain Wattel, but the young Frenchman could only manage a 74 in his final round while Casey shot four birdies on the front nine followed by a birdy and bogey coming home.
“My game plan was to have as much fun as we could,” Casey said. “We tried to concentrate on every single shot, but relax and be aggressive if we could.” Thailand’s Prom Meesawat came from behind to grab the title at the Yeangder Tournament Players Championship Sunday with a total of 277, beating overnight leader Miguel Tabuena of the Philippines on the second extra hole. The championship, with prize money of $90,000, was Prom’s second Asian Tour victory since 2006 when he captured a title in South Korea.
“I’ve been waiting for this win for a long time. I am really glad I made it,” he said at the Linkou International Golf and Country Club. “Hopefully I won’t have to wait another eight years to win again. I will be aiming for a third win now and try to boost my ranking on the Order of Merit.”
Nicknamed the Big Dolphin due to his burly physique, Prom forced extra time when he birdied the last hole for a three-under-par 69 to tie with overnight leader Tabuena (71) in regulation play on 11-under-par 277.
After shooting matching pars on the first play-off hole, Prom needed three shots to safely find the par-five 18th green before sealing the win with a two-putt par as Tabuena narrowly missed his par putt.
Tabuena, 19, was disappointed to drop a crucial shot on 17 after bouncing back from two early bogeys with four birdies on holes nine, 12, 13 and 16 which had put him in the title mix.
“I want to thank God for keeping me calm out there. I really fought hard and gave myself a good chance to win. In the end, Prom turned out to be the better player,” Tabuena said in comments supplied by the organisers.
Filipino veteran Antonio Lascuna settled for third, one shot from joining the play-off following a 69. Rookie Paul Peterson (69) of the United States, Daniel Chopra (72) of Sweden and India’s Anirban Lahiri (73) finished tied for fourth on 280.
285 — Ryan Yip (CAN) 71-69-70-75, Thaworn Wiratchant (THA) 70-69-68-78.