Japan’s Rikuya Hoshino sunk two birdies on his final three holes to win the Qatar Masters and claim his first DP World Tour title by a single stroke ahead of France’s Ugo Coussaud at Doha Golf Club yesterday.
Hoshino, who was in a three-way tie for the lead going into the final day, carded a four-under-par 68 to finish on 14-under overall, a shot ahead of Coussaud and two ahead of Scotland’s Scott Jamieson in third place.
The 27-year-old made a nervy start, mixing two bogeys with three birdies on the front nine but rediscovered his touch after the turn, with a birdie on the 10th and consecutive birdies on the 16th and 17th holes to claim the $425,000 top prize.
“I’m honoured to win at this wonderful tournament,” Hoshino said. “Of course I was nervous but I just tried to keep enjoying it.”
Hoshino, who becomes the fourth Japanese to win a DP World Tour title after Isao Aoki, Hideki Matsuyama and Ryo Hisatsune, was tied with Denmark’s Rasmus Hojgaard and Coussaud on 10-under heading into the final round.
Hojgaard dropped off the pace early, with bogeys on the first and fourth and another after the turn seeing him sign for a one-over-par 73 in his closing round and end in a three-way tie for sixth place.
Jamieson was the day’s big mover, charging up 15 places in the standings with six birdies and an eagle, offset by a single bogey to sign for a seven-under par 65 and 12-under overall.
Northern Ireland’s Tom McKibbin also secured his first top-10 finish of the season. McKibbin started the final round just one shot off the lead but could only manage a closing two-under 70, making birdie on the two par-fives on the back nine.
The 21-year-old Holywood Golf Club member takes home a cheque for €116,000, taking his earnings this season on the DP World Tour over €300,000.
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