Zanotti makes European Tour history

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Zanotti Jun 29 AFP Fabrizio Zanotti made history on Sunday to become the first Paraguay-born player to win on the European Tour. Photo: Glyn Kirk

Cologne – Fabrizio Zanotti on Sunday became the first Paraguay-born player to win on the European Tour, defeating world number two Henrik Stenson at the fifth extra play-off hole to capture the BMW International Open near Cologne.

The 31-year old Asuncion-born player posted a final round 65 to join Stenson (67), Frenchman Gregory Havret (66) and Spain’s Rafa Cabrera-Bello (67) in the play-off in the 2-million euros event on the Gut Larcenhof course.

After Havret dropped out at the second extra hole, the current 305th world ranked Zanotti, competing in his 180th Tour event, matched the birdies of Stenson and Cabrera-Bello at the third extra hole when rain began falling heavily.

Stenson and Cabrera-Bello were then in rough off the tee at the fourth extra hole, the par four 18th, with the Spaniard dropping out after finding water guarding the green with his second shot.

Stenson was forced to lay-up short of the green before then matching Zanotti’s par.

However, Stenson then found the water with his tee shot at the fifth extra hole, the shortened par four 17th, with Zanotti laying-up with the aim of getting a par.

Zanotti then created European Tour history when Stenson, who found a bunker with his third shot, conceded victory after failing to sink his next shot. – Sapa-AFP

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