Alexander Bjork wins first European Tour title in Volvo China Open

Last Updated April 29 2018, 10:37Golf
Alexander Bjork celebrates
Alexander Bjork celebrates

Sweden's Alexander Bjork produced a brilliant final round to secure his first European Tour title in the Volvo China Open.

Leaders

-18 Alexander Bjork

-16 Jorge Campillo, Jordan Smith, Adrian Otaegui, Matt Wallace

-15 Lucas Bjerregaard

-14 Wu Ashun, Jinho Choi, Paul Dunne, Jeung-Hun Wang

Day four report

Sweden's Alexander Bjork hailed the best round of his career after securing his first European Tour title at the Volvo China Open in Beijing.

Bjork carded seven birdies in a flawless closing 65 at Topwin Golf and Country Club to finish 18 under par, a shot ahead of Spain's Adrian Otaegui.

Otaegui was left to rue a three-putt bogey on the 17th, although a birdie on the last sealed outright second ahead of compatriot Jorge Campillo and the English pair of Matt Wallace and Jordan Smith.

Bjork began the day a shot behind Wallace and Otaegui, but made an ideal start with a birdie on the first and picked up further shots on the fourth and eighth to reach the turn in 33.

The 27-year-old also birdied the 11th, 12th and 15th to move ahead of clubhouse leader Smith, who had surged through the field with a superb 64, before a birdie on the 17th capped a nerveless display.

"It's tough to describe the emotions," Bjork told Sky Sports. "I'm really, really happy, really proud of myself the way I played today.

"It's probably one of the best rounds of golf I've ever played, I would say the best round given the situation. I made pretty much no mistakes today so I'm super happy.

"I had a really good feeling this morning actually. I was less nervous than I usually am before a really big final round. I felt confident almost all the way so I guess it was just meant to be.

"I didn't look (at leaderboards) too much the first nine holes but from 12 I knew I was up in the lead, but then I saw a guy had finished on 16 under and I knew I needed to make birdies. That actually helped me to stay positive instead of playing safe.

"I just lost out in Hong Kong in the first tournament of the season with a bad finish and I was close last week (in the Hassan Trophy) so it was my turn today and I'm so happy for that."

Day three report

Matt Wallace will take a share of the lead into the final round of the Volvo China Open on Sunday as he goes in search of a third European Tour title in 12 months.

The Englishman did not even have full playing privileges when he won in Portugal last May but he has since added the Hero Indian Open to his trophy cabinet and a 69 on Saturday saw him get to 12 under alongside Spain's Adrian Otaegui.

The 28 year-old held a one-shot lead coming into day three and birdies on the third, eighth and 10th kept him ticking over but Otaegui made five in a row from the eighth to join him at 12 under.

Wallace made a brilliant up-and-down from over the back of the driveable 15th to lead on his own but a bogey on the 17th after a poor drive left him in a share of top spot.

"Again it was frustrating but I'm playing really good golf so there's not much else I can do," he told europeantour.com.

"I'm playing really nicely, I'm hitting it long and straight and if I do that tomorrow I'll have a few chances at birdie. We're tied for the lead so I'm pretty happy."

Otaegui made 13 pars either side of his birdie burst to sign for a 67.

Swede Alexander Bjork, Spaniard Jorge Campillo and Frenchman Julien Guerrier were at 11 under, with Ireland's Paul Dunne in the group a shot further back.

Day two report

England's Matt Wallace is relishing being the man to catch after claiming the halfway lead in the Volvo China Open in Beijing.

Wallace added a second round of 70 to his opening 65 at Topwin Golf and Country Club to finish nine under par, a shot ahead of Australian Jason Scrivener, Spain's Nacho Elvira and American Sihwan Kim.

Defending champion Alexander Levy struggled to a 73 to be two under par, but with the cut falling at one under the entire 69-strong field is separated by just eight shots.

Wallace, who led from start to finish to claim his first European Tour title in Portugal last year, said in an interview broadcast by Sky Sports: "It was tough all day.

"The wind stayed up all afternoon and it was swirling as well. I couldn't get the ball close enough and it was frustrating, but it was pleasing to birdie the last after a bogey on 17 and I'll take confidence from that into the weekend.

"I'm going to sleep on the lead, which I kind of like doing and we'll go out tomorrow and try to play as well as possible. I love leading from start to finish if I can, I've done it a few times on the Alps Tour. We've got a long way to go but I'm playing nice stuff and I'm just going to keep doing what I'm doing."

Scrivener looked like he would lead the way heading into Saturday after firing five birdies and an eagle, but had to settle for a 69 after running up a double-bogey on the ninth, his final hole of the day.

"It was very frustrating," Scrivener said. "I could feel I was kind of leaking away towards the end. I'm pretty exhausted after being awake since 2am but there are no excuses, it's just not the best way to finish a round.

"I feel like I have progressed slowly over the last couple of years and I feel like I'm close to winning out here. I've just got to put myself in these positions more often.

"I have to work hard and be persistent and hopefully that win will come soon. Eight under is a good position to be in and it's great to be in the mix for the weekend."

Day one report

World number 1426 Jin Daxing fired an opening 64 to take the lead in the Volvo China Open.

The 25-year-old had missed the cut in both previous starts at Topwin Golf Club, but showed much improved form to card six birdies and an eagle.

Jin was five-under with three holes of his round to play, before a birdie at the par-four seventh followed by an eagle at the par-five eighth capped a fine day on home soil.

"I played really well today," said Jin. "I'm really happy with my form and I have to say I would give myself 100 marks for today's round.

"I've been relaxed coming into this week because I don't have too much expectation but I'll just keep playing one stroke at a time, one day at a time and see how it goes for me."

England's Matt Wallace also made eagle at the eighth on his way to a round of 65, matched later on by Italy's Nino Bertasio who fared best of the afternoon starters in a bogey-free round.

Fresh from contending in Morocco last week, Alex Bjork maintained his excellent form with a six-under 66 which featured an eagle at the par-four 15th hole, while there was also an eagle for Scott Vincent on the same score.

Scott Jamieson finished eagle-birdie in a five-under 67 which was matched by Jason Scrivener of Australia, while defending champion Alex Levy, who was also victorious in last week's Trophee Hassan II, birdied two of his final four holes to shoot 69.

There was also a hole-in-one for Japan's Hideto Tanihara on his way to a level-par 72.

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