Joost Luiten lifts the Wales Open trophy at Celtic Manor.
Joost hung on at Celtic Manor, only managing an even par final round of 71, but his tournament total of -18 under par was enough for him to lift the Wales Open trophy.
He admitted it was tough coming down the stretch;
“It was tough, it was hard work down the last. I didn’t have the start I wanted with two bogeys and I just tried to hang in there and wait for my chances and made some nice birdies at the end and a par down the last was luckily enough.”
“There’s always a lot of tension on the first hole, you try to settle down, try to make an easy par or birdie and then I left myself quite a tricky first putt and I just didn’t read it well. I didn’t give the right pace and you leave yourself an eight footer downhill left to right and that’s one you can make or miss and I missed it today.”
“You just try to settle down the first couple holes, and after that, I got back into my game. I started to hit greens, and I just didn’t really make any putts in the middle part, luckily we made a couple at the back.”
Tommy Fleetwood and Shane Lowery were the guys trying to chase him down, they finished tied for second at -13 under par. Shane with a -1 under par 70 last round, and Tommy making a late charge with four birdies and an eagle on the last five holes to card -4 under par 67.
Tommy came off a double bogey on 13, and suddenly came alight;
“After the double bogey on 13 I definitely wasn’t thinking about getting to 13 under, just try your best on the last few and see what you can get. I wanted to get back to level par or under par for the day. I thought that would have been a good effort.”
“After a poor summer, I wanted to finish the season well. I’ve been playing well recently and the more you get up there, the better. This is how you learn. You can’t practice this on the range when you’re coming down the stretch in the top five and just the more you do it, the better it is.”
Five players finished sharing fourth place at -12 under par, including Ryder Cup debutant Jamie Donaldson who carded a very respectable final round of -4 under par 67. He was joined by Nicolas Colsaerts, Eddie Pepperell, Marc Warren and Edoardo Molinari.
Jamie was very pleased with his preparation for the Ryder Cup;
“I’m very pleased, Celtic Manor is a tough golf course which doesn’t quite suit my eye. It’s been hard for me this week to keep focused and try and see the shots, if you take your foot off the pedal, and there’s a lot of trouble about.”
“I’m happy the way I played over the last four or five weeks, building up to the Ryder Cup. I couldn’t have asked for any more, really.”
Ryder Cup team-mates Thomas Björn and Lee Westwood carded closing rounds of 74 and 76 respectively, so will need to perform better next week at Gleneagles.
Lee said he will be ready;
“I needed to play some competitive golf and I’ve done that. I hit a few good shots this week, not so good today, but I probably had one eye on next week. I don’t think the concentration and the focus was there.”
“The Ryder Cup is very special, I am looking forward to getting there tonight and preparing for Friday when it starts.”