Olesen gets 1st European Tour win in Sicily|
Sicily, Italy (Sports Network) - Denmark's Thorbjorn Olesen carded a three-
under 69 on Sunday and hung on for his first European Tour victory at the
Olesen finished at 15-under 273 and won by a single stroke over Chris Wood at
Verdura Golf & Spa Resort.
After a rookie season last year that netted Olesen three runner-up finishes,
the 22-year-old is now a European Tour winner. He posted a pair of top-10s
this season prior to Sunday's breakthrough victory.
"It was great," Olesen said in a televised interview. "It means very much to
Wood fired an impressive eight-under 64 in the final round, but a bogey at
the 17th cost the Englishman a chance at his maiden title.
Olesen's fellow Dane Soren Kjeldsen (68) and Nicolas Colsaerts (69) shared
third at 12-under 276, followed by Jose Manuel Lara, whose four-under 68
earned him fifth place at minus-11.
Olesen was in a battle throughout Sunday thanks to Woods' impressive start.
Wood was six-under par in a six-hole span on the front nine, but Olesen
remained in front thanks to a four-foot birdie putt at the seventh.
Wood tied for the lead after a two-putt birdie at 11 and a 35-footer for
birdie at 12. Olesen reclaimed first with a 25-foot birdie at the ninth, but
the solo lead was brief. Wood kicked in a short birdie putt at the par-five
14th to match Olesen in first at 15-under par.
Wood found himself alone in the lead after Olesen barely missed the green at
the 13th, but did miss a four-foot par effort. Olesen's play at the next hole
essentially won him the championship.
The Dane pulled his second shot left at the par-five 14th. Olesen hit a
spectacular flop shot that rolled down to three feet and he cashed in on the
birdie putt to get back to 15-under par.
"I was trying to hit a little fade," he said. "I had a very difficult chip.
Lucky for me, I managed to get in there and made a really nice birdie."
Wood bogeyed the 17th hole around the same time Olesen birdied 14. The players
switched positions on the leaderboard and that's how it stayed. Olesen made
four relatively routine pars on his way to hoist the trophy.
"I struggled a bit out there," Olesen admitted. "But I managed to get it
around. I'm really happy."
Now that Olesen finally got that elusive first victory, the goals have changed
a bit. He said in his post-round interview that the Ryder Cup is in his
"I'm thinking all the way," Olesen said on TV. "That's my goal. That's what
I'm training for. It's tough with so many good guys, but this was a good step
in the right direction."
Anthony Wall (66), Shane Lowry (67) and Andrew Parr (71) shared sixth at 10-
under par, followed by Alvaro Velasco (68) and Tano Goya (69), who tied for
ninth at minus-nine.
NOTES: Former major champions Rich Beem and John Daly were part of a group
tied for 11th at eight-under par...Next week is The Masters, which was won
last year by Charl Schwartzel.
04/01 11:16:51 ET