Pablo Larrazábal claimed his seventh DP World Tour title, and his second in just four appearances, after the Spaniard birdied the final hole for a scorching 62 and a first win on home soil at the ISPS Handa Championship in Spain.
The 38-year-old, who won the MyGolfLife Open hosted by Pecanwood last month in South Africa, began the final round three strokes back at Infinitum – just outside Tarragona and merely one hour down the road from his home in Barcelona – and he catapulted himself into the mix courtesy of five successive birdies from the ninth.
Fellow Spaniard Adrián Otaegui and his two playing partners in the final group, Aaron Cockerill of Canada and South Africa’s Hennie Du Plessis, all remained in contention coming down the stretch having shared a three-way tie for the lead heading into the final round.
But Larrazábal’s 15 under total, after an eight under final round, was enough to clinch a seventh Tour title – moving him alongside Jon Rahm, Alvaro Quirós and Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño on the list of Spaniards with most wins, and making him the second multiple winner of the 2022 season after World Number One Scottie Scheffler.
Otaegui had an opportunity to force a play-off with an eagle chance at the last, but a birdie was only enough to finish one stroke back in second spot, with Cockerill and Du Plessis finishing a shot further back in a share of third on 13 under.
Pablo Larrazábal: “What a day. But I knew that my golf was there. I couldn’t make any putts the first three days but I told my girlfriend last night that she had to choose her clothing for the pictures!
“I knew that I had a low one in my bag and that’s what I did. Today I holed putts and that was key. I mean, to shoot 62 in windy conditions with the flags out there, it was good.
“I was more relaxed today (on the range, waiting for the final group to finish) than in Pecanwood. I had to wait in Pecanwood for a play-off and I told my caddie Raul (Quiros) that we had to wait, we had to keep concentrated; it was no time for jokes or for interviews.
“We had to keep concentrated just in case we had to go – and we were ready to go, and we didn’t have to (today). I have to thank so many people. First of all, my main sponsor Callaway that has been trusting me through the years. I put in a new three-wood last week, it’s working great so I have to thank them. And this weekend obviously, my physical trainer was here.
“My girlfriend and my brother are here, my friends from home were here. So it’s been quite emotional but I kept the nerves down and kept concentrated and I managed to finish the job, so I’m very happy.”
Adrián Otaegui: “It’s been a great day, no bogeys, holed a few par putts, played really well, lots of shots to the pin. I think I did a great job and congratulations to Pablo – that has some an amazing round. It was windy out there.
“I am really happy. Of course, over 72 holes there has been good, and not that good, shots but I think I did the right thing. 13 was a birdie hole but couldn’t. make it.
“I need to have some rest now and get ready for next week. I came in playing very well and this week I just played well, so I’m enjoying myself a lot at the moment.”