Sunday, 11 March 2018
Day 4 Highlights - Hero Indian Open

Matt Wallace won his second European Tour title with a dramatic play-off victory over Andrew Johnston at the Hero Indian Open.

The Englishman entered the day at DLF Golf and Country Club with a share of the lead and a closing 68 got him to 11 under, a total matched by compatriot Johnston after a 66.

Wallace hit a huge drive down the 18th on the first extra hole and with Johnston laying up and seeing his birdie putt agonisingly lip out, the 27 year old had two putts for the title after hitting a brilliant second onto the putting surface.

He rolled his first up to the side of the hole and tapped home to seal a second victory in 32 appearances after last season's triumph at the Open de Portugal at Morgado Golf Resort.

American Sihwan Kim finished at eight under, a shot clear of Spaniard Pablo Larrazábal and Austrian Matthias Schwab.

Argentinian Emiliano Grillo was then five under, with home hero and Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex leader Shubhankar Sharma and Scot Stephen Gallacher a shot further back.

Wallace was playing on the Alps Tour in 2016 but six wins that season - including five in a row - got him onto the Challenge Tour and he continues his meteoric rise following the victory in Portugal in just his fourth European Tour event.

"I played great," he said. "Ever since being three over through eight at the start of the week I've played some of the best golf of my life and to do it in that style at the end there capped it off.

"Beef really had a great round today because I was playing fantastic and thought I might have been a few more clear.

I've played some of the best golf of my life and to do it in that style at the end there capped it off - Matt Wallace

"I hit some really good shots and that play-off: I pumped it down there on the last and it went a long way and then a four iron went even further than I thought it would so I was jacked up a bit. To hit two shots like that is exactly why I play the game.

"With the people that were coming up behind me, there were some real class players.

"Beef's putt on the last should have gone in and it's just my day today."

Johnston made a gain on the second from six feet to get within one of the lead but he was not there for long as Wallace birdied the same hole from 25 feet to get to eight under.

Both players birdied the fourth and when Wallace holed a 30-footer to get into double figures on the seventh, he was three ahead.

Johnston got up and down from the front of the eighth to birdie the par five but Wallace holed a ten-footer on the same hole to stay three ahead.

The gap was two at the turn after Johnston attacked the driveable ninth and got up and down for a birdie but Wallace always had a response and chipped in at the tenth to keep his cushion.

Johnston hit an approach to 12 feet on the 13th to cut the gap to two and when he hit another stunner into the 17th, he was just one behind.

Wallace hit a wonderful long putt up the ridge on the 15th but saw the ball agonisingly lip out and his lead was gone on the par three next.

He left his tee-shot short in the rough and flew his second over the green into a bunker, doing well to get up and down and drop a single shot.

Kim looked to be in contention right up to the end as he made birdies on the second, fourth, seventh, ninth and 11th but a bogey on the last ended his hopes.

Larrazábal was another man who saw his chances disappear with a disappointing finish, bogeying the 14th, 16th and 17th having made gains on the first, fourth, sixth, eighth, 11th and 13th.

Schwab had four birdies and two bogeys as the Qualifying School graduate secured his best European Tour finish.

Grillo signed for a level par 72, while Sharma had three double-bogeys in a 75 and Gallacher closed with a 74.

Dutchman Joost Luiten, England's Aaron Rai and South Korean Jinho Choi rounded out the top ten at two under.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1WALLACE, MattENG18-11
2JOHNSTON, AndrewENG18-11
3KIM, SihwanUSA18-8
T4SCHWAB, MatthiasAUT18-7
6GRILLO, EmilianoARG18-5

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