Sunday, 25 June 2017
Romero and the trophy  (Getty Images)
Romero and the trophy (Getty Images)

Andres Romero held his nerve down the stretch to claim his first European Tour title in ten years at the BMW International Open.

The final round at Golfclub München Eichenried came down to a four-way battle between Romero, Masters Tournament champion Sergio Garcia, Richard Bland and Thomas Detry on a day of high drama in Bavaria.

Tournament invite Romero produced a closing birdie to sign for a 65 and set the target at 17 under and with the final pairing of Bland and Garcia both carding late bogeys, the Argentinian won his first European Tour title since the Deutsche Bank Players' Championship of Europe in 2007.

Romero had not made a regular European Tour appearance since the 2012 BMW Masters and his last top ten came at the BMW PGA Championship in 2008.

"I'm really happy, after ten years winning on the European Tour, especially here in Germany. I'm really, really happy," he said.

"The whole round was very good. I was focused all day. I didn't make any bogeys, that is a rare thing for my type of game. The last few holes I noticed I made seven birdies but the whole round was excellent.

"I was nervous when I got to the 18th green but finally when I was thinking with two putts I could win the tournament, I was really nervous. But hopefully I was going to do a two-putt and now I have my trophy and enjoy this moment."

Detry carded a closing 66 to finish at 16 under alongside Garcia and Bland, who both carded rounds of 69.

Detry holed from 12 feet on the second to get within two of the lead before Bland made an excellent par on the first after a wayward tee-shot but Garcia failed to get up and down after missing the green with his second.

The Belgian made a gain on the fourth to move to 12 under before Garcia then hit a stunning second shot to tap-in range on the third to rejoin the lead.

He and Bland were soon overtaken by Detry, though, who was dialled in with his irons and made birdies on the fifth and sixth.

Detry extended his lead to two shots as he took advantage of the par five ninth with Romero making his first gains of the day on the two holes before the turn.

Detry had looked entirely nerveless in turning in 31 but when he missed the green on the tenth, his lead was down to one.

That lead was gone when Garcia got up and down from the side of the ninth for a birdie and Bland made his first gain of the day on the same hole after hitting the pin with his third shot.

Bland hit a stunning approach to the tenth to make another birdie before he, Garcia and Romero all picked up a shot on the par five 11th.

Detry put his approach to two feet on the 14th for a birdie before Garcia edged in front from 12 feet on the 13th but Romero made a hat-trick of birdies from the 13th to join him in top spot.

A Bland birdie on the 14th moved him to 16 under and when Detry holed a lengthy effort on the 16th, there was a four-way tie at the top.

Detry finished with two pars to set the target and when Garcia three-putted to bogey the 16th, it looked to be a three-horse race.

Bland bogeyed the 17th after missing the green and when Romero hit the 18th green in two to set up his birdie, he had a two-shot cushion, making Bland and Garcia's closing gains too little, too late.

Swede Rikard Karlberg carded a 66 to finish at 14 under, a shot clear of England's Tommy Fleetwood who closed with a 67 and Italy's Renato Paratore who signed for a 68.

Spaniard Nacho Elvira and South African Hennie Otto were then at 12 under, one ahead of last season's winner Henrik Stenson and American David Lipsky.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1ROMERO, AndresARG18-17
T2DETRY, ThomasBEL18-16
T2GARCIA, SergioESP18-16
T2BLAND, RichardENG18-16
5KARLBERG, RikardSWE18-14

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