Home European Tour: Jon Rahm overcomes weight of expectation to lift Spanish Open | Golf | Sport

European Tour: Jon Rahm overcomes weight of expectation to lift Spanish Open | Golf | Sport

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Rahm came from two shots back at the start of the day in signing for a five-under par 67 and also playing the final hole in five-under for the four days for his 20-under par tally in Madrid.

Rahm joins the likes of Spanish greats Seve Ballesteros, Sergio Garcia, Alvaro Quiros and Miguel Angel Jimenez as winner of the Spanish Open.

The feisty Spaniard has now captured four European Tour events from just 17 starts.

Rahm, however, admitted it was one of the hardest Sunday’s he has had to face in his short pro career.

“It’s hard to describe the pride I have right now to be Spanish national champion having been a Spanish amateur champion many times with the Spanish Golf Federation, and to be able to win as a pro and do this for them and for the Spanish people, it feels great and hard to describe,” he said to Sky’s Andrew Coltart.

“It was by far the hardest Sunday I’ve ever had to play and the weight of the crowd I was carrying and I saw the willingness and the feelings as everybody wanted me to win.

“They were pushing so hard and I felt that and as a golfer it is hard to deal with your emotions sometimes, and while I tried to isolate myself I could feel the emotion and used the crowd emotion.”

Ireland’s Paul Dunne, who headed to the last day leading by one, finished second with a round of 71 for an 18-under par total.

Dunne got off to a nervous start quickly finding himself two behind Rahm who birdied the opening two holes while the diminutive Irishman was three behind when he bogeyed the fourth.

Then for a fourth day in succession, Dunne birdied the par-5 fifth with his eagle chip shot from just off the green missing the cup by millimetres.

Rahm then birdied to one clear on 18-under but dropped a shot on nine with Dunne parring four holes in succession from the sixth with the duo heading to the closing nine locked at 17-under.

Rahm again incurred the wrath of Sky commentators, including renowned Dougie Donnelly, for a second day running, in failing to call ‘Fore’ after a wild drive off the 10th that would lead to a chip-in birdie and take him to 18-under.

Moments before Dunne, also in the final group, joined him on 18-under par in also birding the 10th.

There was a two-shot turnaround when he bogeyed 11 and Rahm holed a curling birdie putt on 13, as Rahm moved to 19-under par.

Dunne bogeyed 14 but regained the shot with a birdie on 15 before securing second on his own with a 72nd hole birdie and a 23rd birdie over the four days.

Dunne was headed to nearby Madrid Airport as the lone Irishman to join a charter flight to Morocco for this week’s Hassan 11 Trophy in Rabat.

It was at the same event a year ago that Dunne lost out in a play-off to Italy’s Eduardo Molinari but he returns as the reigning British Masters champion and having produced three top-10s in as many weeks.

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