Antoine Rozner pips Andy Sullivan in Dubai smash and grab

27-year-old Frenchman cards final round of 64 as Niall Kearney shares 30th place

Antoine Rozner was victorious in Dubai. Photograph: Andrew Redington/Getty

Antoine Rozner was victorious in Dubai. Photograph: Andrew Redington/Getty

 

Antoine Rozner carded a superb final-round 64 to claim his maiden European Tour title with a two-shot victory at the Golf in Dubai Championship.

The 27-year-old Frenchman started Saturday’s final round four shots adrift of long-time leader Andy Sullivan, who looked set to complete a wire-to-wire win when leading by two as he headed down the back nine.

However, Rozner was hot with his irons around the turn to surge into contention and took the outright lead for the first time at the 13th hole.

The pair fought for supremacy before the Englishman bogeyed the 16th to hand Rozner the initiative.

He kept his composure with a stunning approach to the par-five last for a birdie to reach 25 under par overall and become the 14th first-time winner on the European Tour this season.

“It means a lot,” Rozner said. “It’s been such a strange year. We have been through so much all over the world and to be able to get it done in such nice fashion, eight under, it’s amazing.

“I’m going to be very honest with you, the first time I saw I was in the lead was when I was on the 18th green so I didn’t really look at the leaderboard.

“I knew the game was there. I didn’t know it was that good but I’m excited.”

Meanwhile Niall Kearney rounded off his week with a 71, to leave him on 13 under par and in a share of 30th place.

Sullivan, who set a course record of 61 in the first round on the Fire Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates, looked to heading for a comfortable victory as he birdied the opening hole for the fourth day in a row.

He saw his lead swell to three followed a birdie at the seventh to reach 23 under but Mike Lorenzo-Vera was also in contention after going five under in his first 10 holes of his final round.

But it was his fellow Frenchman Rozner who challenged Sullivan as he rolled in third successive birdies from the ninth and took the lead with an eagle at the 13th hole.

Sullivan returned to the summit on 24 under when he picked up a shot at the same hole and found himself on his own after Rozner bogeyed the 15th.

Lorenzo-Vera was also one behind the leader with his seventh gain of the day at the 16th but Rozner responded immediately with a tap-in birdie at the same hole to rejoin the lead.

He hit the front again despite narrowly missing his birdie putt at the 17th as Sullivan dropped a shot at the 16th.

Rozner birdied the last meaning Sullivan had to eagle the 18th to force a play-off.

The four-time European Tour winner found the bunker with his second shot and when he failed to hole out, Rozner was crowned champion.

Sullivan closed with a par to finished in a tie for second with Lorenzo-Vera, Matt Wallace and Italy’s Francesco Laporta.

Scotland’s Grant Forrest carded a final-round 63 to finish in sixth on 21 under, with Ross Fisher one shot further back.

Collated final scores & totals in the European Tour Golf in Dubai Championship Gbr & Irl unless stated, par 72):

263 Antoine Rozner (Fra) 63 69 67 64

265 Andy Sullivan 61 66 68 70, Matt Wallace 63 67 67 68, Mike Lorenzo-Vera (Fra) 69 66 65 65, Francesco Laporta (Ita) 65 69 65 66

267 Grant Forrest 66 68 70 63

268 Ross Fisher 63 67 68 70

269 Steven Brown 70 63 69 67, Marc Warren 64 70 68 67, Niklas Lemke (Swe) 66 68 66 69, Joakim Lagergren (Swe) 67 68 67 67, Bernd Wiesberger (Aut) 70 66 66 67

270 Max Schmitt (Ger) 68 64 68 70, Thorbjorn Olesen (Den) 69 64 69 68, Clement Sordet (Fra) 68 70 66 66, Sami Valimaki (Fin) 70 68 65 67, Renato Paratore (Ita) 68 65 65 72

271 Rikard Karlberg (Swe) 65 69 71 66

272 Sebastian Soderberg (Swe) 67 69 68 68, Robert Macintyre 66 68 66 72, James Morrison 67 72 67 66

273 Lorenzo Scalise (Ita) 65 68 71 69, David Horsey 71 67 68 67, Sean Crocker (USA) 68 66 68 71

274 Craig Howie 64 68 70 72, Paul Waring 68 68 72 66, Jordan Smith 69 68 68 69, Bernd Ritthammer (Ger) 68 67 70 69, Thomas Pieters (Bel) 67 68 68 71

275 Stephen Gallacher 69 69 66 71, Callum Shinkwin 68 68 71 68, Oscar Lengden (Swe) 64 69 67 75, Niall Kearney 71 67 66 71, Mikko Korhonen (Fin) 66 69 71 69, Matthew Baldwin 71 70 67 67, Danny Willett 67 67 73 68

276 Jazz Janewattananond (Tha) 66 70 72 68, Matthew Jordan 73 68 69 66, John Axelsen (Den) 66 67 71 72, Nicolas Colsaerts (Bel) 72 67 71 66, Martin Kaymer (Ger) 66 71 69 70, Pep Angles (Spa) 65 73 71 67, Adrian Otaegui (Spa) 68 68 69 71, Thomas Detry (Bel) 68 72 66 70

277 Nicolai Von Dellingshausen (Ger) 70 67 73 67, Marcus Armitage 68 69 71 69, Robert Rock 70 70 68 69, Sam Horsfield 68 70 70 69, Alexander Knappe (Ger) 70 68 68 71

278 Eddie Pepperell 69 69 71 69, Aaron Rai 70 69 67 72

279 Romain Wattel (Fra) 71 66 72 70, Damien Perrier (Fra) 67 69 72 71, Hurly Long (Ger) 70 68 69 72, Robin Sciot-Siegrist (Fra) 69 72 69 69

280 Wil Besseling (Ned) 73 65 71 71, Haotong Li (Chn) 67 72 68 73

281 Mathiam Keyser (Rsa) 70 69 73 69, Tapio Pulkkanen (Fin) 67 69 73 72, Euan Walker 71 70 70 70, Jack Senior 68 69 72 72

282 Marcus Kinhult (Swe) 69 72 71 70, Jens Fahrbring (Swe) 68 70 71 73, Andrew Wilson 74 67 70 71, Emilio Cuartero Blanco (Spa) 69 68 73 72

283 Jorge Campillo (Spa) 66 71 70 76

285 Ewan Ferguson 72 69 73 71

287 Jordan Wrisdale 72 67 74 74, Joel Stalter (Fra) 70 68 70 79, Steven Tiley 69 71 70 77

288 Pedro Oriol (Spa) 73 68 76 71

290 Ben Evans 71 66 77 76

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.