Sunday, August 12, 2018

MacIntyre beaten in play-off at Finnish Challenge

Vierumäki Resort Cooke Course, Vierumäki, Finland 
Koivu trophy clean
                                          This image of Kim Koivu  is published by courtesy of Tomi Natri 

Kim Koivu became the first Finn to win his country’s biggest golf tournament after birdieing the first first play-off hole to claim the Vierumäki Finnish Challenge title over Scotland’s Robert MacIntyre.
Koivu and MacIntyre had tied after 72 holes on 21-under-par 267, both shooting 66s in the final round
Koivu and MacIntyre began the final round as co-leaders on 15 under par amidst a bunched leaderboard, but the duo almost immediately turned Day Four into a two-horse race.
The Finn began his round with three-consecutive birdies and appeared to be marching towards victory as he carded a front-nine of six under par 30. 
MacIntyre, from Oban, gave chase, however, and he turned in five under par 31 after a flurry of his own, highlighted by an eagle on the par five 9th.
“Rob hit a great wedge there to almost an impossible pin,” Koivu said. “He hit it to two feet, and after that I was definitely feeling like ‘whoa this is getting serious now.’”
Both players were spurred on by the battle that was emerging, and after gains on the 12th and 13th holes, MacIntyre was rapidly transforming from the hunter to the hunted.
“The front nine got me going but I made a couple mistakes there on the back nine and then I three-putted on 14 and Rob got the lead,” said Koivu.
The Scot carried a one-shot advantage all the way to the 17th hole before a Koivu birdie knotted things up with one to play. When both players parred the 72nd hole, they headed back to the 18th tee for a sudden-death play-off, where Koivu emerged victorious after burying a 15ft birdie putt.
“I only saw the hole, really. There was no option other than the ball going into the hole, that’s all I saw,” said Koivu. “I just feel like when you’ve got to make a putt you make it.”
“It was just a great battle with Rob, he played awesome. He put the pressure on me all the way around and I just kept fighting, and I was the lucky one to come out on top.
“Holing those putts coming down the stretch there on 17, and then in the play-off, it just feels great. I couldn’t think of a better place to win than on home soil, that’s for sure.”
With the win — his second of the season after taking the Belt and Road Colorful Yunnan Open — the 27 year old moves to the fourth position on the Road to Ras Al Khaimah and makes serious headway towards earning his European Tour card.
It was an incredible week for Finnish golf at the Vierumäki Resort Cooke Course, as native sons Antti Ahokas and Kalle Samooja joined Koivu inside the tournament's top- five. Samooja also retained his fifth position on the Road to Ras Al Khaimah as the Nordic country can now boast two of its own among the season-long point race front-runners.
For his efforts, MacIntyre moves 45 places up the Rankings and now sits in the 27th position — within shouting distance of finishing the season inside the coveted top 15.
The European Challenge Tour now heads to Northern Ireland for the Galgorm Resort and Spa Northern Ireland Open, presented by Modest! Golf at Galgorm Castle in Ballymena for the 19th event on the season-long Road to Ras Al Khaimah.

Final totals
par 288 (4x72)

NameCountryTo ParR1R2R3R4TotalRankings PointsOfficial Prize Money
1KOIVU Kim FIN-217065666626728,800€ 28,800
2MACINTYRE Robert SCO-216866676626719,800€ 19,800
3FENASSE Mathieu FRA-176470686927112,600€ 12,600
4AHOKAS Antti FIN-166967667027210,800€ 10,800
5MURRAY Tom ENG-15637169702736,264€ 6,264
6PARKER Ben ENG-15696869672736,264€ 6,264
7SAMOOJA Kalle FIN-15667167692736,264€ 6,264
8ADAMS James ENG-15667070672736,264€ 6,264
9WILSON Oliver ENG-15716766692736,264€ 6,264
10VENTURA Kristoffer NOR-14676769712743,780€ 3,780
11CARLSSON Johan SWE-14696572682743,780€ 3,780
12SAXTON Reinier NED-13696968692753,240€ 3,330
13HANSEN Joachim B. DEN-13726967672753,240€ 3,330
14SCALISE (AM) Lorenzo ITA-13646970722753,240€ 0
15PERRIER Damien FRA-12716971652762,790€ 2,970
16HENRY Scott SCO-12736768682762,790€ 2,970
17SCHNEIDER Marcel GER-11736769682772,340€ 2,520
18ESPAÑA Edouard FRA-11716870682772,340€ 2,520
19DEL MORAL Carlos ESP-11697070682772,340€ 2,520
20KAKKO Roope FIN-10686970712781,811€ 1,904
21FELDBORG NIELSEN Christopher SWE-10696971692781,811€ 1,904
22LANGASQUE Romain FRA-10687168712781,811€ 1,904
23ROUSSEL Robin FRA-10697071682781,811€ 1,904
24SODERBERG Sebastian SWE-10687368692781,811€ 1,904
25MRUZEK Filip CZE-9716968712791,458€ 1,494
26STOW Ben ENG-9726868712791,458€ 1,494
27VON DELLINGSHAUSEN Nicolai GER-9707171672791,458€ 1,494
28LINARD Thomas FRA-9686675702791,458€ 1,494
29STARK Oscar SWE-9667171712791,458€ 1,494
30LINDELL Oliver FIN-9736870682791,458€ 1,494
31HELLGREN Björn SWE-9736771682791,458€ 1,494
32BERGAMASCHI Filippo ITA-9687269702791,458€ 1,494
33COUSSAUD Ugo FRA-9706775672791,458€ 1,494
34DOAK Chris SCO-9697070702791,458€ 1,494
35PAPADATOS Dimitrios AUS-9666774722791,458€ 1,494
36FORREST Grant SCO-9687070712791,458€ 1,494
37KUNZENBACHER Julian GER-8717071682801,188€ 1,224
38FINCH Richard ENG-8726869712801,188€ 1,224
39FERGUSON Ewen SCO-8697072692801,188€ 1,224
40ALLAN James ENG-7697069732811,026€ 1,062
41RIU Victor FRA-7707072692811,026€ 1,062
42GIRRBACH Joel SUI-7726772702811,026€ 1,062
43HULDAHL Jeppe Pape DEN-7697271692811,026€ 1,062
44RITTHAMMER Bernd GER-7717069712811,026€ 1,062
45WENNSTAM Alexander SWE-7706974682811,026€ 1,062
46TREE Toby ENG-668727567282864€ 900
47RUUSKA Lauri FIN-673686873282864€ 900
48HELLBERG Niclas FIN-673686774282864€ 900
49ORRIN Max ENG-570717369283774€ 810
50MATUS Stanislav CZE-568737171283774€ 810
51MADDY Paul ENG-467747073284693€ 716
52EASTON Bryce RSA-468717669284693€ 716
53VAN WEST Robbie NED-471707172284693€ 716
54CUARTERO BLANCO Emilio ESP-468727371284693€ 716
55TRAPPEL Manuel AUT-370717371285639€ 657
56LAMPERT Moritz GER-370697373285639€ 657
57CARLSSON Magnus A SWE-271637676286603€ 621
58SENIOR Jack ENG-266737770286603€ 621
59CALDWELL Jonathan NIR070717176288576€ 594
60MOORE Fraser SCO+367718073291558€ 576
61ROBERTSHAWE Samuel ENG+469718270292540€ 558



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