LONDON – Marcus Kinhult’s remarkable rally on the final two holes saw the Swede win his maiden European Tour title in a thrilling finish to the British Masters on Sunday.
It seemed Kinhult had blown his chance at the Hillside course in Southport, near Liverpool, when he squandered a one-shot lead with bogeys on the 15th and 16th holes.
But the 22-year-old put that double disappointment behind him with birdies on the last two holes to finish one shot in front of defending champion Eddie Pepperell, Matt Wallace and Scotland’s Robert MacIntyre.
England’s Pepperell had set the clubhouse target on 15-under after a closing round 66 before MacIntyre brilliant eagle-birdie finish took him joint top of the leaderboard.
There was the prospect of a four-man play-off for the title when Kinhult birdied the 17th and playing partner Wallace missed from four feet.
But after Wallace also missed a birdie opportunity on the last, Kinhult holed from 12 feet to secure the £500,000 ($649,857, 578,472 euros) first prize.
“I’m speechless, I don’t know what happened the last two holes,” Kinhult said.
“I was behind Matt and he looked really solid but I birdied 17 and all of a sudden I had a putt to win – it’s incredible,” added Kinhult, who had missed his last four cuts on the European Tour.
“I have never felt that pressure before... There’s a lot going through my mind, a lot of emotions and I am just so happy that I managed to handle those pretty well. It’s really special.”AFP