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The Debrief - Hainan Open

The Debrief - Hainan Open

The Hainan Open is over for another year and Francesco Laporta will join a glittering list of past champions winners after securing victory at Sanya Luhuitou Golf Club. Here’s what you might have missed…

Laporta holding trophy

A new number one

Laporta’s victory was a huge moment on the Road to Mallorca. Not just because it was the first European Challenge Tour victory of the Italian’s career, but also because he secured his European Tour playing privileges for next year and moved to Number One in the Road to Mallorca Rankings. The 29-year-old has been in and around the top 15 all season following a runner-up finish at the season-opening Turkish Airlines Challenge, and his victory in Hainan saw him jump nine places from tenth to top spot in the Rankings.

Laporta celebration

Say What!?

Prior to the tournament’s start, the Challenge Tour gathered together Todd Clements, Ewen Ferguson, Rasmus Højgaard and Martin Simonsen for a laugh out loud feature. The four players were given noise-cancelling headphones and three sayings about their fellow players to pass down the line. See how they got on here, with hilarious outcomes…

Back-to-back hole outs

Saturday’s eight under par round of 64 catapulted Laporta to the top of the leaderboard and was a huge factor in his ability to capture his first Challenge Tour title. His round included an incredible pair of back-to-back hole-out eagles, at the par five sixth and par four seventh. The Italian holed his chip from just off the green on the par five, before holing out from the fairway on the following hole for an eagle two and made the turn in 30, six under par. Also, he was this close to a third eagle on the final hole…

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