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Fichardt produces back nine fireworks to win at Le Vaudreuil

Fichardt produces back nine fireworks to win at Le Vaudreuil

Darren Fichardt is a winner on the European Challenge Tour for the first time after producing an outstanding finish to claim the Le Vaudreuil Golf Challenge title at Golf PGA France du Vaudreuil.

Fichardt win

The South African, a five-time winner on the DP World Tour, saved his best golf of the week for the back nine on Sunday, signing for a five under par round of 67 and a 15 under par total, two strokes ahead of Oliver Farr who finished in solo second on 13 under par.

The 48-year-old battled for the lead with Farr all day before a three-shot swing around the turn and an eagle at the par five 14th saw him take the lead, and he was delighted to get over the line.

“I haven’t won in a few years now and to come out here and win on such a beautiful, challenging golf course is awesome,” he said. “I’ve been working hard and have been playing pretty well but I’ve also been experimenting a lot.

“I was surprisingly very calm. I thought I could ease round in two under par today which I thought might get the job done, but I had to dig deep and I made a few really crucial putts. I’m very proud of myself.”

Farr has opened up a three stroke lead at the turn, but Fichardt went on to birdie holes 11 and 12, and despite his only dropped shot of the day coming on 13, an eagle at the par five 14th and another birdie at 15 saw him jump into the outright lead.

The South African was full of praise for Farr, admitting that they pushed each other all the way in Normandy.

“Oliver was playing very well and at one stage I was three back,” he added. “When you win a tournament you obviously want it to be easy, but when you have a battle like that, it’s so much more rewarding. I feel like I really won it, as it wasn’t given to me. Oliver definitely brought that to the day.

“I’ve been in this situation quite a few times and there’s no better way to get the job done, to show your opponent that you’re not falling off. You’re there on every single hole and you’re not going away.”

Italian Gregorio De Leo fired a six under par final round to finish in third place alongside Englishman Jamie Rutherford, with Scotsman Euan Walker, Italian Lorenzo Scalise and England’s Richard McEvoy, a former winner at Le Vaudreuil, sharing fifth place.

The win sees Fichardt catapult into 20th on the Road to Mallorca Rankings. Frenchman Ugo Coussaud remains in first place with Spaniard Manuel Elvira retaining second. Scalise climbed one place to third, Casey Jarvis dropped one place to fourth, and Swede Adam Blomme completes the top five.

The Challenge Tour now heads to Italy for the Italian Challenge Open at Golf Nazionale which takes place from July 6-9.

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