Dunne left to lament missed chance as Wang wins third European Tour title

Dunne left to lament missed chance as Wang wins third European Tour title
DOHA, QATAR - JANUARY 29:  Jeunghun Wang of South Korea poses with the trophy following his victory in the playoff during the fourth round of the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters at the Doha Golf Club on January 29, 2017 in Doha, Qatar.  (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

DOHA, QATAR - JANUARY 29:  Jeunghun Wang of South Korea poses with the trophy following his victory in the playoff during the fourth round of the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters at the Doha Golf Club on January 29, 2017 in Doha, Qatar.  (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

He’s up to 33rd in the Race to Dubai after picking up €25,016 in the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, but Paul Dunne know he let another big pay day slip away for the second week running.

While the signs are good for the 24-year old from Greystones in terms of his birdie count, he knows he needs to cut out the expensive mistakes, especially on Sundays.

He went into the last two rounds one stroke behind the leaders but ended up seven strokes outside a three-way playoff that saw 21-year old South Korean Jeunghun Wang deny Jaco Van Zyl and Joakim Lagergren at the first extra hole to capture his third European Tour title.

Dunne was tied for 10th with a round to go, five strokes behind Wang. But he got off to a horrid start, slipping to four over with bogeys at the second, third, fifth and sixth before rallying strongly in Doha Golf Club.

Four birdies in his next five holes got him back to level for the day and he then followed a bogey at the 15th with a birdie at the 16th to share 21st place on nine under par.

Graeme McDowell also had a mixed week, finishing tied 28th on eight under after a closing 69, but insisting he had "exceeded" his expectations.

He told the Gulf Times

“I actually exceeded my expectations this week. Only one part of my game let me down – I drove the ball pretty awfully – but the rest of my game was definitely at a competitive level and bodes well. This was very good on a lot of levels,” McDowell said.
“I’ve always been a fan of this tournament and I’ve always been a fan of the course here. The conditions are usually tougher than they were this week; I’m not sure I’ve ever spent a week in Doha when the winds have been this benign. The golf course was in fantastic shape and the greens are phenomenal.
“It’s my first time back to Doha in five years so it’s great to see the way the city has expanded and the way the skyline has got bigger and bigger as it prepares for 2022. St. Regis Hotel was magnificent, great hospitality and I really, really enjoyed my week.”
McDowell had spoken earlier of his eagerness to regain the form that has earned him 10 European Tour titles and three PGA TOUR victories, including his historic win at the 2010 US Open.
McDowell was a mainstay of the Ryder Cup team from 2008 and part of winning sides in 2010, 2012 and 2014, but after missing out last year, he’s determined to regain his place for next year’s edition in France.
“I played the previous four, missed last year and was disappointed not to be there,” McDowell said. 
“Like I’ve talked about, it’s a long road back to where I want to be but this week was a couple of steps down that road. I’m looking forward to going to Dubai and continuing to work on my game.”

As for Wang, he notched his third European Tour victory in just 29 appearances.

He began the day with a three-shot lead but was caught on the back nine before regaining the top spot on his own with a birdie on the 16th. 

A bogey on the next dropped him back into a share of the lead, with Lagergren safely in the clubhouse on 16 under par following a round of 66. 

Wang then left his birdie chance agonisingly short on the last hole to miss out on victory in regulation play, a par concluding his round of 71, and Van Zyl then made it a three-way play-off by rolling in his par putt for a round of 68. 

On the first extra hole it was Van Zyl who experienced heartache when his birdie putt lipped out, and with Lagergren only able to make par, Wang got up and down from the back of the green to become the youngest winner in the tournament’s 20-year history at just 21 years and 144 days. 

It was Wang’s third European Tour victory in just 29 appearances, with only Matteo Manassero (19 years and 206 days) and Seve Ballesteros (20 years and 77 days) achieving that haul of titles at a younger age. 

The 2016 Sir Henry Cotton Rookie of the Year, who won the Trophée Hassan II - also after a play-off - and the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open last year, also joins 2009 US PGA Champion YE Yang as the most prolific Korean winner on the European Tour. 

France’s Mike Lorenzo Vera just missed out on joining the trio in the play-off after a dramatic finish to his final round. 

Having reached 16 under par with his seventh birdie of the day on the 13th hole, he found the water on the 15th and dropped his first shot of the day before chipping in for eagled on the 16th. 

However, he then dropped another shot on the 17th before entering the water hazard again on the last hole and making another bogey, to sign for a round of 66 and finish on 15 under par, one shot outside the play-off.  

South African Thomas Aiken also missed out by a single stroke following his only bogey of the day on the 17th hole in a round of 68.

European Ryder Cup star Rafa Cabrera Bello closed with a round of 68 to share sixth position with fellow Spaniard Nacho Elvira (70) and England’s Jordan Smith (66). 

Jeunghun Wang

“I really didn't expect that I would win this week. I just keep trying to make birdies, trying to save par and finally won this week. I've got a lot of confidence from this week, and I learned from the other players about the course. And so I feel really good right now and just want to win another one.”
“I was really nervous. It's really long day for me. I missed a lot of greens on the back nine. But my chipping was really good, so I saved every par. So I think that's the key that I won this week.”

Jaco Van Zyl

“I had a good start which was really important. I had an unfortunate three-putt on six which kind of put a damper on things a little bit. I just lingered along until I made a nice one on 13. Just unfortunately I hit a couple of good putts that just didn't go in. The back nine was playing really tough. The wind came up and it was really challenging. It's a good start to the season though, and a little bit more fireworks, so hopefully it continues.”

Joakim Lagergren

“I can't complain about the second place, but there is obviously a lot of disappointment right now. I played really well today. I would have taken six under before the day, definitely. I played well, but lost in a playoff. I knew before we went to the tee box there in the play-off, you need to make birdie here to win it. I was hitting four iron down in that bunker, so it's a tough shot from there.”

Complete final scores

272 J Wang (Kor) 69 67 65 71, J Van Zyl (RSA) 67 69 68 68, J Lagergren (Swe) 67 72 67 66, (Wang won at the 1st extra hole) 

273 M Lorenzo-Vera (Fra) 69 69 69 66, T Aiken (RSA) 68 68 69 68, 

274 R Cabrera Bello (Esp) 70 70 66 68, J Smith (Eng) 71 66 71 66, N Elvira (Esp) 67 69 68 70, 

275 N Kimsey (Eng) 66 74 66 69, K Aphibarnrat (Tha) 66 70 70 69, 

276 C Wood (Eng) 69 70 70 67, L Bjerregaard (Den) 69 68 73 66, 

277 C Paisley (Eng) 74 67 69 67, J Campillo (Esp) 69 67 75 66, D Lingmerth (Swe) 71 69 70 67, E Els (RSA) 68 70 71 68, A Karlsson (Swe) 68 73 69 67, 

278 S Walker (Eng) 68 71 71 68, P Hanson (Swe) 70 70 73 65, C Hanson (Eng) 68 69 73 68, 

279 G Storm (Eng) 68 70 72 69, P Edberg (Swe) 70 72 69 68, J Luiten (Ned) 71 70 71 67, B Dredge (Wal) 64 72 73 70, A Noren (Swe) 68 70 71 70, Paul Dunne (Irl) 67 70 70 72, A Wall (Eng) 68 69 71 71, 

280 A Sullivan (Eng) 68 68 70 74, T Detry (Bel) 67 74 70 69, P Peterson (USA) 71 70 75 64, D Im (USA) 68 69 74 69, A Knappe (Ger) 67 72 71 70, G McDowell (Nir) 66 75 70 69, A Björk (Swe) 69 69 75 67, N Colsaerts (Bel) 70 69 72 69, R Karlsson (Swe) 70 70 70 70, 

281 R Ramsay (Sco) 68 74 69 70, B Wiesberger (Aut) 70 72 71 68, D Drysdale (Sco) 71 71 70 69, R Langasque (Fra) 70 70 67 74, 

282 D Lipsky (USA) 72 66 75 69, J Stalter (Fra) 69 71 73 69, D Perrier (Fra) 72 70 72 68, M Korhonen (Fin) 65 71 72 74, D Burmester (RSA) 70 71 71 70, O Fisher (Eng) 70 70 68 74, F Aguilar (Chi) 70 68 75 69, 

283 D Frittelli (RSA) 71 67 76 69, P Larrazábal (Esp) 69 71 71 72, N Bertasio (Ita) 71 69 68 75, T Bjørn (Den) 68 72 75 68, M Kaymer (Ger) 70 72 68 73, J Carlsson (Swe) 71 69 72 71, R Karlberg (Swe) 69 73 70 71, 

284 R Bland (Eng) 70 71 72 71, S Gros (Fra) 72 69 72 71, 

285 A Levy (Fra) 69 69 75 72, T Olesen (Den) 70 71 76 68, G Havret (Fra) 69 71 70 75, 

286 M Warren (Sco) 69 73 73 71, R Jacquelin (Fra) 67 71 73 75, S Lee (Kor) 69 73 72 72, S Hend (Aus) 69 72 72 73, 

287 R Fox (Nzl) 72 70 67 78, 

288 B Hebert (Fra) 70 72 73 73, 

289 D Fichardt (RSA) 72 70 72 75, 

290 M Pavon (Fra) 71 70 76 73, 

291 D Brooks (Eng) 68 74 78 71, 

293 S Dyson (Eng) 67 70 76 80, 

298 R Gonzalez (Arg) 69 73 82 74.