The fifth and final episode of this season of The Graduates, a year-long series following the 2021 Challenge Tour graduates as they look to adapt, thrive and survive on the DP World Tour, sees five graduates make the final event of the DP World Tour season - the DP World Tour Championship.
In a chance to reflect on what has been an exceptional breakthrough year, Oliver Bekker, Ewen Ferguson, Hurly Long, Yannik Paul and Marcel Schneider all took time to look back at the many successes, near-misses and learnings from the 2022 season.
Ferguson was unquestionably one of the breakout stars of 2022, securing his maiden DP World Tour title at the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters and lifting another trophy later in the year at the ISPS Handa World Invitational presented by AVIV Clinics in Northern Ireland. He almost made it a hat-trick of wins as he finished second at the Made in HimmerLand three weeks later.
Yannik Paul became the second 2021 Challenge Tour graduate to win on the DP World Tour this year after he birdied the final hole to win the Mallorca Golf Open last month. He started his DP World Tour career with a top ten at the Joburg Open. Another four followed, including finishing second at the Soudal Open before his maiden victory.
Another of three Germans set to feature at the DP World Tour Championship, Hurly Long finished third at the Ras Al Khaimah Classic and second in Kenya in just his third and fourth events of the season. Since then, he has added a further six top tens, including both the Barbasol Championship and Barracuda Championship which were open to DP World Tour members due to the strategic alliance with the PGA TOUR.
Oliver Bekker graduated from the Challenge Tour last year after finishing seventh on the Road to Mallorca. He quickly established himself as a top-ten machine on the DP World Tour, finishing in the top ten in six of eight events from February into the start of May, including a runner-up finish at the Catalunya Championship after losing out in the play-off to Adri Arnaus.
Marcel Schneider recovered from missing his first six cuts of the season to seal three consecutive top tens in Belgium, Netherlands and Germany in May and June. Three further top tens have since followed, with Schneider not missing a cut since he withdrew from the Cazoo Open supported by Gareth Bale in early August, as well as making his Major Championship debut this season.