Sunday, 16 April 2017
Day 4 highlights - Trophee Hassan II

Edoardo Molinari clinched his first European Tour title since 2010 as he beat overnight leader Paul Dunne in a play-off at the Trophée Hassan II.

The 36 year old finished his fourth round with an eagle at the 18th to snatch the outright lead but Dunne held his nerve to card a birdie at the last to get to nine under and take the contest to a play-off.

But with Dunne unable to convert his six-foot par putt at the first extra hole, Molinari rolled in from two feet to claim his third European Tour victory.

Englishman Paul Waring was alone in third on eight under after carding four birdies and a bogey in his final-round 70.

To be able to win this week deletes a lot of bad memories and hopefully I can keep going down this road - Edoardo Molinari 

Molinari began the day four shots behind leader Dunne and lost further ground on the Irishman when he carded a bogey at the first.

Back-to-back birdies at the second and third took the Italian to five under but he dropped another shot at the next before parring the last five holes of his front nine to reach the turn in 36.

Molinari made a stunning start to the back nine, notching a birdie at the 11th before calmly rolling in his tricky eagle putt at the 12th to get to seven under and take a share of second place.

Another bogey at the 16th left him three shots adrift of Dunne with two holes remaining but he curled in his birdie putt from close range at the 17th before firing an eagle from 20 feet at the last to take the outright lead. Dunne then birdied the last to force a play-off.

With neither player on the green after three shots at the first extra hole, Dunne sent his bunker shot to within six feet of the cup, while Molinari putted to two feet from just off the green.

After Dunne missed his par putt, Molinari holed from close range to secure the trophy.

Molinari, whose last victory came at the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles in 2010, said: "It's fantastic. I've been through some very hard times with injuries and bad form.

"To be able to win this week deletes a lot of bad memories and hopefully I can keep going down this road."

When asked whether it was one of his best ever performances on a back nine, he said: "Given the circumstances it's probably one of the best.

"After the 12th hole I thought I had a chance, then I missed a short putt at the 13th. I had another chance on 15 - didn't make it - then when you bogey 16 you think it's almost over because on the 17th today you'd be happy with a par.

"I managed to hit a great five iron to seven or eight feet and I made the putt. That gave me a boost going down the last - I still had a chance.

"I thought 'if I can make a three here then suddenly it's wide open'."

The Italian has had injury problems in recent years and has had to go to Qualifying School in each of the last two seasons.

He added: "It just shows that you should never give up, you should always keep trying, keep working hard.

"I've probably been the player who has spent the most time on the driving range over the last three years. This is a great reward for so much hard work."

Dunne also reached the turn in 36 after mixing two birdies with two bogeys on his front nine.

He extended his lead to two shots with a birdie from four feet at the long tenth but dropped his third shot of the day at the next.

The 24 year old made a gain at the 15th to return to nine under before missing his par putt at the 16th.

But with the pressure on, Dunne notched a birdie from five feet at the last to force a play-off.

Dunne said: "I felt like there were just so many shots that slipped away from me. It's just one of those days.

"I felt like I was really close to shooting four or five under and stuck with one under in the end.

"I'm happy with my form and looking forward to next week.

"I'm just a bit disappointed not to come out with the result we wanted but it's a step in the right direction."

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1MOLINARI, EdoardoITA18-9
2DUNNE, PaulIRL18-9
3WARING, PaulENG18-8
T4DUBUISSON, VictorFRA18-6
T4JENSEN, LasseDEN18-6
T6BROOKS, DanielENG18-5

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