Postive for Kearney, wins for Westwood and Wu
 Lee Westwood with the CIMB NIAGA Indonesian Masters trophy. Picture via  Asiantour.com

Lee Westwood with the CIMB NIAGA Indonesian Masters trophy. Picture via Asiantour.com

Asian Tour — Niall Kearney opened his Asian Tour account with a 53rd place finish and a cheque for $2,925 in the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters.

The Dubliner had four birdies, four bogeys and a double bogey in a closing 74, finishing on nine over par at Royale Jakarta Golf Club for a positive start to his season.

It was even more positive for England’s Lee Westwood, who beat Thailand’s Chapchai Nirat with a birdie at the first play-off hole to clinch his third victory in the event and the 42nd of his career.

Westwood, five clear overnight, was cruising to an emphatic victory before successive bogeys on 16 and 17 blew the title race wide open.

He had the opportunity to win with a birdie at the last but was forced to settle for a par, a 73 and a seven-under par total of 281 that left him tied with Nirat, who closed with a 66 to set the target.

Returning to the 18th hole for extra-time, Westwood made no mistake from same spot again, draining his five footer for the win.

“It was a tough putt coming into the hill over on 18,” Westwood said of the 72nd hole. “I misread it slightly and hit it to about five-feet and missed it. 

"But fortunately in the play-off, I hit it to the exact same spot, I knew the line and it was a nice straight putt for the win.

“I’ve never been beaten around this golf course which is great and this win will give me the confidence for the year ahead.”

Final — CIMB NIAGA Indonesian Masters

Royale Jakarta GC course (am denotes amateur)

281 Lee WESTWOOD (ENG) 69-74-65-73, Chapchai NIRAT (THA) 68-74-73-66 (Westwood won with a birdie at the first play-off hole)

282 Kalem RICHARDSON (AUS) 75-70-70-67.

283 Thomas BJORN (DEN) 66-76-71-70.

284 Thitiphun CHUAYPRAKONG (THA) 71-77-67-69, Y.E. YANG (KOR) 73-71-69-71.

285 Angelo QUE (PHI) 72-75-72-66.

286 Paul PETERSON (USA) 71-73-73-69, Prayad MARKSAENG (THA) 73-72-72-69, Berry HENSON (USA) 75-72-69-70.

287 Matthew GILES (AUS) 74-73-71-69, Adilson DA SILVA (BRA) 73-76-69-69, Lionel WEBER (FRA) 73-74-69-71, Bryce EASTON (RSA) 73-77-65-72.

288 Jazz JANEWATTANANOND (THA) 71-76-71-70, Raphael DE SOUSA (SUI) 72-76-68-72, Yosuke TSUKADA (JPN) 71-71-73-73, Jeunghun WANG (KOR) 74-71-70-73, Khalin JOSHI (IND) 71-76-68-73.

297 Niall KEARNEY (IRL) 73-76-74-74

 Wu Ashun with the Volvo China Open trophy. Picture © Getty Images

Wu Ashun with the Volvo China Open trophy. Picture © Getty Images

European Tour — Wu Ashun became the first Chinese player to win a European Tour event on home soil when he held off a spirited challenge from England’s David Howell at the Volvo China Open in his native Shanghai.
The 29-year old closed with a 71 at Tomson Shanghai Pudong Golf Club to finish on nine under par, one shot ahead of Howell, who missed an eight foot par putt on the last which would have forced a play-off.
Wu, who primarily plies his trade on the Japan Golf Tour but now has full playing privileges in The Race to Dubai, becomes the third Chinese player to triumph on The European Tour, following in the footsteps of Liang Wen-chong (2007) and Zhang Wen-lei (2003).
Both Liang’s and Zhang’s victories came in Singapore, and following Li Hao-tong’s agonising near miss in last week’s Shenzhen International, Wu’s win will now see the 29 year old enter the history books.

Defending champion Alex Levy finished in a tie for third place on seven under par alongside Thai ace Prom Meesawat and Argentine Emiliano Grillo, whose title challenge faltered with a double bogey at the par three 17th hole, where his tee shot found the water. 

“It’s a wonderful day today. Everyone knew the course was playing very tough today, but I played very well today and I really enjoyed it,” Wu Ashun said.

“It’s been a wonderful week with wonderful weather, and I’d like to thank everybody for coming out and supporting me.

“Winning my national Open is very special, and I’m very excited about the rest of the season. I have many friends here with me this week, and they helped me a lot and encouraged me to play well.”
Howell was clearly disappointed not to win or force a playoff, explaining: “It’s obviously tough to take. I was in very good shape to win the tournament for most of the day, and didn’t get the job done. So it’s going to hurt for a while, but I didn’t do a lot wrong.
"I holed a lovely putt on 17 to save par to give myself every chance coming down the last. It felt like I was already in a play-off, because Ashun was in the clubhouse on nine under, so if I birdie the last I win the tournament, and if I make bogey I lose it. Unfortunately it was the latter.
“It’s obviously hugely disappointing to finish with a six, and I guess the crucial shot was the lay-up. To miss the fairway has cost me the chance to at least force a play-off, so I’ll probably be ruing that one for a while. 
"I actually thought I’d hit a reasonable pitch, but it came up short then I rushed the first putt past, and left myself with too much to do. But that’s golf.”

With This Win - Wu Ashun

  • His first European Tour International Schedule victory in his 26th European Tour event.
  • This victory beats his best previous European Tour performance of tied 11th in the 2013 Maybank Malaysian Open.
  • Becomes the sixth first-time winner of The 2015 European Tour season.
  • Becomes the first Chinese winner on The European Tour since Liang Wen-chong at the 2007 Singapore Masters.
  • Becomes the third Chinese player to win a European Tour. He follows: Zhang Lian-wei (2003 Singapore Masters) and Liang Wen-chong (2007 Singapore Masters).
  • Becomes the first Chinese player to win a European Tour event on home soil in the 49th Tour event staged on Chinese soil.
  • Victory comes in his eighth appearance in the Volvo China Open.
  • Victory beats his previous best performance in the Volvo China Open of tied 50th in 2014.
  • Becomes the third Chinese player to win the Volvo China Open since the event began in 1995. He follows Chen Jun (1997) and Zhang Lian-wei (2003).
  • Becomes the 21st different player to win the Volvo China Open in 21 editions.

Final Round Scores

279 W Ashun (Chn) 73 66 69 71,

280 D Howell (Eng) 68 72 68 72,

281 E Grillo (Arg) 73 70 69 69, P Meesawat (Tha) 72 70 68 71, A Levy (Fra) 69 68 71 73,

282 L Hao-Tong (Chn) 71 68 69 74,

283 R Ramsay (Sco) 72 68 70 73,

284 B An (Kor) 72 68 76 68, P Uihlein (USA) 70 67 76 71, R Wattel (Fra) 72 67 74 71, M Carlsson (Swe) 73 72 65 74, T Hatton (Eng) 75 69 69 71, J Quesne (Fra) 69 67 76 72,

285 S Benson (Eng) 75 69 66 75, B Dredge (Wal) 68 74 72 71, M Foster (Eng) 72 71 74 68, L Bjerregaard (Den) 75 70 70 70,

286 R Paratore (Ita) 74 71 71 70, M Ilonen (Fin) 73 71 70 72, B Hebert (Fra) 70 76 67 73, M Manassero (Ita) 71 68 73 74, I Park (Kor) 70 74 71 71, J Morrison (Eng) 73 70 70 73, T Pieters (Bel) 70 71 70 75, R Green (Aus) 73 71 69 73,

287 R Karlsson (Swe) 75 70 70 72, K Aphibarnrat (Tha) 71 68 76 72, R Rock (Eng) 73 73 72 69, A Noren (Swe) 73 70 72 72, T Lee (Kor) 74 71 71 71,

288 G Havret (Fra) 76 68 72 72, J Edfors (Swe) 74 72 69 73, S Kjeldsen (Den) 75 71 69 73, R Cabrera-Bello (Esp) 73 69 74 72, R Jacquelin (Fra) 74 68 72 74, C Wood (Eng) 73 70 75 70, G Bourdy (Fra) 74 72 70 72, R Fisher (Eng) 76 69 68 75, M Griffin (Aus) 75 68 72 73, S Kapur (Ind) 70 72 75 71, M Hendry (Nzl) 68 73 73 74,

289 S Strange (Aus) 71 72 69 77, D Horsey (Eng) 72 73 71 73, R Gibson (Aus) 71 71 74 73, T Fisher Jnr (RSA) 75 71 71 72, C Lee (Sco) 70 75 72 72,

290 M Korhonen (Fin) 71 72 75 72, R Carter (USA) 71 73 77 69, M Fraser (Aus) 69 76 73 72, T Pilkadaris (Aus) 72 73 70 75,

291 Z Xin-Jun (Chn) 75 71 79 66, J Lee (Aus) 72 74 72 73, J Carlsson (Swe) 70 75 75 71, O Wilson (Eng) 70 76 72 73, M Nixon (Eng) 73 70 72 76,

292 N Cullen (Aus) 72 73 70 77, F Aguilar (Chi) 80 65 70 77, D Drysdale (Sco) 75 69 76 72, M Kieffer (Ger) 73 72 73 74,

294 S Hend (Aus) 71 73 76 74, A Johnston (Eng) 72 70 74 78, Y Tian (Chn) 75 69 77 73,

295 E Espana (Fra) 74 72 77 72,

296 Z Jin (Chn) 72 70 78 76,

297 J Lando Casanova (Fra) 71 68 77 81,

299 S Hansen (Den) 75 70 78 76,

301 S Jeffress (Aus) 72 74 77 78