Matthew Fitzpatrick, winner of the 2016 DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, gave himself the perfect fillip as the countdown to the defence of his title at Jumeirah Golf Estates begins by claiming his fourth European Tour title in dramatic fashion at the Omega European Masters at Crans-sur Sierre Golf Club in Switzerland.
The23 year old, who won the Race to Dubai’s grand finale with a one-stroke victory over Tyrrell Hatton last year, had endured a relatively quiet season with just two top ten finishes to his name prior to arriving in Switzerland. But, after beating Australia’s Scott Hend at the third hole of a sudden-death play-off to win 450,000 points and move from 30th to 12th in the rankings, the Englishman is now in a strong position with ten tournaments including four big-money Rolex Series events culminating in the Dubai showpiece on the Earth course from November 16 – 19, still to play.
“I hope this win is a turning point for me,” said Fitzpatrick who has now won at least one European Tour title in each of his three seasons on Tour and finished fourth in his DP World Tour Championship debut in 2015 before last year’s victory. “It had been a bit of a disappointing season for me so far but this is my third year now on Tour with a win under my belt so I’m really happy with that and I’m looking forward to the rest of the season now.
“I’m really looking forward to getting back to the DP World Tour Championship to defend my title and now that I’ve won, my confidence is higher than it has been all season. Hopefully I can keep this momentum heading into the final four events of the season and then be ready to put in a strong title defence at Jumeirah Golf Estates.”
Fitzpatrick started the final round four shots behind leader Hend but turned on the style with four birdies in an electric front nine of 32 before repeating the feat down the homeward stretch to match the 44 year old at 14 under par 266.
It looked like Hend, who also missed out on Omega European Masters glory in a play-off to Alex Noren last year, was headed for victory on the second repeat trip up the 18th but he missed a six-foot birdie putt to let Fitzpatrick back in.
Source: DP World Tour Championship