Andy Sullivan fights back tears as he wins English Championship

The victory was his first on the European Tour since the 2015 Portugal Masters

Andy Sullivan celebrates winning the English Championship with his family on a zoom call. Photograph: PA

Andy Sullivan celebrates winning the English Championship with his family on a zoom call. Photograph: PA

 

An emotional Andy Sullivan ended a near five-year wait for his fourth European Tour title as he recorded a seven-shot victory at the English Championship in Ware.

Heading into the final day at Hanbury Manor with a five-shot advantage, the 34-year-old saw his lead cut to just two by Spaniard Adrian Otaegui. But while his challenger faltered over the closing stages, Sullivan recorded four birdies on the back nine to finish on 27 under par.

Ireland’s Cormac Sharvin finished 13 under par overall after a final round 69. He birdied his first two holes and added a third on the 10th, before dropping his only shot of the day on the 11th to finish in a tie for 19th place.

The victory was O’Sullivan’s first on the European Tour since the 2015 Portugal Masters and his first since the birth of his son and the deaths of both his brother-in-law as well as a close friend. Tears flowed as he was greeted by his family via a laptop that was set up off the 18th green after he finished the round.

Asked at the winner’s press conference about his emotional reaction, he said: “I think it was just the people that have missed it for me. My brother-in-law was only 24 and got taken from us, so it’s quite emotional for him not to witness it. A good friend of mine has passed as well. It means a lot to do that for them.

“It’s just nice for my family, to win for my little boy who’s only two-years-old. It’s just nice for him to see daddy being successful. He hasn’t quite seen that.

“Also for me, I can’t remember too much about my emotions in the first three wins but I was fighting the tears back on those last three holes. I was really just proud of myself for what I’ve achieved this week.”

Sullivan made a fine start with an eagle on the second but a bogey on the fourth coupled with five birdies for Otaegui saw the Spaniard move within three at the turn.

Otaegui holed from just off the green on the 12th to cut the lead to two shots but Sullivan responded with a gain at the same hole before he birdied the 14th and 15th to take charge. His challenger faded and dropped a shot on the 17th and Sullivan finished with a flourish to birdie the last.

Rasmus Hojgaard ended on 19 under after a flawless 64 as the 19-year-old Dane recorded a third successive top six finish on the UK Swing.

Both Paul Dunne and Jonathan Caldwell missed the cut for the weekend.

Final round scores and totals in the European Tour’s English Championship (British unless stated, par 71):

257 Andy Sullivan 66 62 64 65

264 Adrian Otaegui (Spa) 65 66 67 66

265 Rasmus Hojgaard (Den) 65 67 69 64

266 Wilco Nienaber (Rsa) 68 65 67 66

267 Steven Brown 66 65 66 70

268 Dean Burmester (Rsa) 66 63 69 70, Brandon Stone (Rsa) 65 66 67 70, Min Woo Lee (Aus) 64 67 70 67

269 Nicolas Colsaerts (Bel) 65 66 68 70, Dave Coupland 69 65 66 69, Sean Crocker (USA) 69 67 66 67, Scott Vincent (Zim) 64 70 68 67, Scott Jamieson 74 63 68 64

270 Jason Scrivener (Aus) 64 69 66 71, Marcus Armitage 68 69 63 70, Jamie Donaldson 67 64 69 70, Jordan Smith 68 65 67 70, Louis De Jager (Rsa) 69 66 67 68

271 Cormac Sharvin (Irl) 63 70 69 69, Andrew Johnston 66 65 71 69, Ryan Fox (Nzl) 67 67 66 71, Connor Syme 65 69 68 69, Oscar Lengden (Swe) 65 66 70 70, Chris Paisley 68 65 70 68, Ewan Ferguson 67 70 69 65

272 Romain Langasque (Fra) 65 70 70 67, Martin Simonsen (Den) 65 68 66 73, Oliver Fisher 67 68 69 68, Robin Roussel (Fra) 67 69 68 68, Ben Stow 70 67 64 71, Antoine Rozner (Fra) 67 69 69 67, Nicolai Hojgaard (Den) 67 68 69 68, Aaron Cockerill (Can) 67 68 68 69

273 Richie Ramsay 66 68 69 70, Adrian Meronk (Pol) 66 69 71 67, Renato Paratore (Ita) 69 67 69 68, Laurie Canter 64 65 70 74, Marc Warren 68 68 67 70, Thorbjorn Olesen (Den) 66 70 70 67, Andrea Pavan (Ita) 68 68 67 70, Johannes Veerman (USA) 67 69 70 67, Lorenzo Gagli (Ita) 68 69 69 67, Lee Westwood 66 69 68 70

274 Sihwan Kim (Kor) 67 65 72 70, Scott Hend (Aus) 71 66 70 67, Romain Wattel (Fra) 65 71 70 68, Toby Tree 67 67 72 68, Miguel Angel Jimenez (Spa) 66 68 74 66, Alejandro Canizares (Spa) 69 64 69 72, Jack Senior 65 72 68 69, Ricardo Santos (Por) 68 68 69 69, Aaron Rai 68 69 68 69

275 Joachim B. Hansen (Den) 69 66 70 70, Justin Harding (Rsa) 67 65 74 69, Marcel Schneider (Ger) 67 70 69 69

276 Richard Bland 65 66 73 72, David Drysdale 65 70 70 71, Bryce Easton (Rsa) 66 69 72 69, Julien Guerrier (Fra) 70 67 69 70, Thomas Detry (Bel) 64 72 66 74

277 Matthew Southgate 67 69 69 72

278 Richard McEvoy 70 66 70 72

279 Wil Besseling (Ned) 70 67 75 67, Tapio Pulkkanen (Fin) 70 67 70 72

281 Kalle Samooja (Fin) 67 70 71 73, Lee Slattery 69 67 71 74, Pablo Larrazabal (Spa) 69 67 74 71

282 David Howell 64 71 73 74, Rhys Enoch 66 70 72 74

283 Emilio Cuartero Blanco (Spa) 71 66 73 73

285 David Law 68 68 76 73, Callum Shinkwin 68 67 69 81, Bernd Ritthammer (Ger) 69 65 77 74

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