Sport24.co.za | Austria’s Wiesberger wins Italian Open title

Rome – Austrian Bernd Wiesberger came from behind to claim his third European Tour win of the season at the Italian Open on Sunday to move top of the Race to Dubai standings.

The 34-year-old had started the day three shots behind Matthew Fitzpatrick but a bogey-free final round of 65 saw him finish on 16-under for the tournament, beating the Englishman by one shot.

The victory was the seventh on the European Tour of Wiesberger’s career as he comes back from a serious wrist injury that sidelined him for seven months in 2018.

The win moves him from third to first in the season-long Race to Dubai ahead of Spaniard Jon Rahm, and to a career-high 22nd in the world rankings.

“It’s been a great summer for me,” said Wiesberger.

“I’ve won three times this year and it’s been the same every time, I’ve just really enjoyed my time and I’m positive to be back out there because I know how tough it was when I had to withdraw from these great events.”

Wiesberger birdied the par-five ninth hole to pull level with Fitzpatrick, taking a two-shot lead when the English player double-bogeyed the ninth.

The Austrian sealed victory when Fitzpatrick was unable to convert a 10-foot eagle putt on the par-five 18th.

For Fitzpatrick, a fourth second-place finish in 2019 moves him to fourth in the Race to Dubai rankings.

American Kurt Kitayama finished at 12-under after a final-round 71, a shot clear of England’s Andrew Johnston, Scot Robert MacIntyre and another Austrian Matthias Schwab.

Home favourite Francesco Laporta was at nine-under alongside India’s Shubhankar Sharma and Englishman Matt Wallace.

Leading and selected final-round scores from the European Tour’s Italian Open at the Olgiata Golf Club in Rome on Sunday (GBR/IRL unless stated, par 71):

268 – Bernd Wiesberger (AUT) 66-70-67-65

269 – Matthew Fitzpatrick 67-65-68-69

272 – Kurt Kitayama (USA) 66-70-65-71

273 – Andrew Johnston 67-68-70-68, Robert MacIntyre 69-69-64-71, Matthias Schwab (AUT) 68-69-70-66

275 – Shubhankar Sharma (IND) 66-69-72-68, Matt Wallace 69-67-67-72, Francesco Laporta (ITA) 69-70-68-68

276 – Rory Sabbatini (SVK) 65-70-75-66, Wang Jeunghun (KOR) 72-69-64-71, Andrea Pavan (ITA) 69-67-70-70, Justin Walters (RSA) 70-71-70-65, Erik van Rooyen (RSA) 68-68-70-70

277 – Graeme McDowell 69-66-71-71, Justin Rose 66-69-78-64, Richard Sterne (RSA) 72-69-68-68

Selected:

281 – Thongchai Jaidee (THA) 69-70-71-71

282 – Edoardo Molinari (ITA) 70-70-72-70

283 – George Coetzee (RSA) 69-73-70-71

286 – Lee Westwood 69-72-73-72

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