Kiradech Aphibarnrat wins the inaugural Shenzhen International at Genzon Golf Club in China.
Kiradech and Chinese teenage sensation Li Hao-Tong were tied at the top of the Shenzhen International leaderboard at -12 under par at the end of the final round.
Li Hao-Tong had set the clubhouse lead after his last round -5 under par 67, and then at back to see if anyone would catch him. Kiradech did, but his final round of even par only matched the top score, the players then went into a sudden death play-off, starting at the par four 18th. A birdie for Kiradech gave him the inaugural Shenzhen International title, with the best putt of his life;
“Special thanks to my caddie, he was always pushing me.”
“When we were two behind on the last two holes he said you have not lost, we have not signed the scorecard yet and he was completely right and I just got the job done.”
“I had a chance to win in 72 holes but the putt in the play-off is the best putt I have ever made in my life.”
“I’ve been struggling for a year. I lost my coach, changed my equipment. It’s a big changing time after I won.
“It’s been like that for a while. I haven’t been at the top of the leaderboard but finally I had the chance to do it. It was tough to stay there.”
It would have been fantastic for teenager Li Hao-Tong to have won on home soil, he made six birdies in windy conditions, and in the end congratulated the winner;
“I made a lot of birdies again. But the Thai guy played so well. Congratulations for him.”
Tommy Fleetwood was third, one shot behind at -11 under par for the tournament, a last round -3 under par 69 lifting him above the posse of players at -10 under, which included Peter Uihlein.
Peter was happy with the result, saying he had made some changes to his wing;
“It was my first tournament trying to do some new stuff with my swing. I’ll take it. It’s one of those things that might take a little while under pressure to get used to.”
Low round of the day came from Alvaro Quiros, -9 under par 63, he had a chance to post the European Tour’s first round of 59, but bogeys on the 12th and last holes were the only blemishes of an effort that featured a sensational 11 birdies;
“A 63 in any golf course in the world is a good score.”
Bubba Watson also finished well, carding a final round -7 under par 65, and wished his putting had been better the first three days;
“I wish I would have putted better in the first three rounds.”
“I putted well in the last round. All in all it was a good test. It shows me what I need to work on. It shows me that I can play outside the US, especially today.”