DP World Tour Championship, Dubai

DP World Tour Championship, Dubai

DP World Tour Championship, Dubai
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Winner: Jon Rahm

Both the result of the DP World Tour Championship and the Race to Dubai came down to a bunker shot and a four-foot birdie putt at the 72nd hole on the Earth course at Jumeirah Golf Estates. After the finely judged sand shot, Jon Rahm holed the putt to collect $5 million — $3 million for winning the season-ending tournament, the largest first prize in European Tour history, and $2 million for topping the season-long points table. A par at the final hole would have meant a playoff with Tommy Fleetwood, who also had the chance to scoop the double jackpot.

Rahm and Fleetwood both had to finish first or second to win the Race to Dubai, as long as they were not beaten by the other. Bernd Wiesberger, who led the Race entering the week, finished tied for 28th and in third place, joining Shane Lowry and Matthew Fitzpatrick in benefitting from the bonus pool.

Rahm began the final round tied for the lead with Mike Lorenzo-Vera, the Frenchman having been out in front since an opening 63. Rahm birdied five of the first seven holes, helped by 30-footers at the first and sixth holes and a 20-footer at the seventh, to lead by six. Lorenzo-Vera, without a win on the European Tour, closed with a 70 to finish in third place, two behind Rahm and in front of Rory McIlroy in fourth and defending champion Danny Willett in fifth.

Fleetwood was eight behind at one point but made a late charge. The 2017 Race winner came home in 31 with birdies at the last two holes for a 65 to post the target at 18 under par. Rahm had bogeyed the eighth and ninth holes and then had two birdies and two bogeys coming home. A three-putt at the 15th meant he came to the last needing a birdie to win the tournament for the second time and became only the second Spaniard, after six-time winner Seve Ballesteros, to end the season as European No. 1. Rahm had scores of 66, 69, 66 and 68 for a 19-under-par total of 269.

Rahm had not played golf for six weeks since retaining his national Open, opting to rest up prior to his imminent wedding. “You dream of making birdies on 18 to win a tournament,” said the 25-year-old. “And how I was playing early on, I was hoping not to need that, but it happened, and I came through when I needed it and really proud of myself for that.”


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