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Ryan Fox claims first European win and highest world ranking

Fox further confirms his standing as one of the game's most exciting prospects. (Photo: Getty Images)
New Zealander Ryan Fox rose to his highest ranking (64) in world golf and broke through for his first European Tour title with a win at this week’s ISPS Handa World Super 6’s Perth, the Aucklander defeating Spain’s Adrian Otaegui in a one-sided final.

Fox won the six-hole final 3&2 at Lake Karrinyup and with it a cheque for $A245,000 but importantly he has the long-awaited first victory behind him and the promise of much more to come for the powerful and talented 32-year-old.

Fox only just survived his opening round match of today’s six hole knockout matches against rising Asian star Jazz Janewattananond but with wins against Kristoffer Reitan of Norway, good friend Paul Dunne of Ireland and finally Otageui he completed an impressive first European Tour victory and for that matter his first in a Tier One event on the Australasian Tour.

Otaegui, the second highest ranked player in the field prior to the event, had played beautifully leading into the final of the knockout match on day four but lost his way against an impressive display by Fox.

Fox won his first three holes of the final and it was all over almost before it had begun.

“I just felt really calm,” said Fox referring to his demeanour in the final when facing the biggest win of his life.

“Adrian helped me out on a couple of holes, but I felt really in control of things out there. It was nice to hole a couple of putts that mattered and I guess that makes it feel easy in the end.

“I always enjoyed match play as an amateur. I had a pretty decent record playing for Auckland in the Inter-provincial, and I grew up playing team sports, so you just get used to trying to beat someone and I quite like that. It's different than trying to beat the golf course.

“Wasn't too hard a switch in the end (from stroke play to match play). I guess it's nice having the added bonus if you hit a bad shot, you're only losing a hole. Although losing a hole in a six-hole match is a little harder than an 18-hole match. It's a little bit of a freer format.

“I think the event's been a success here the last few years, crowds are fantastic, and I'm sure that the concept will work in other places in the world.”

In the playoff for 3rd and 4th Ireland’s Dunne defeated Zimbabwe’s Scott Vincent.

The highest finishing Australian was Perth rookie Minwoo Lee who was beaten in his quarterfinal match against the eventual runner-up Otaegui. It was Lee’s second top ten in just his second European Tour event as a professional, starts in both events coming via invites.

SCORES

 

 

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