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Wu waltzes to emphatic win in Kenya

Wu waltzes to emphatic win in Kenya

Wu Ashun enhanced his record as the DP World Tour's most successful Chinese golfer as he became a four-time winner with victory at the 2022 Magical Kenya Open presented by Absa.

Wu Ashun

The 36-year-old entered the final day at Muthaiga Golf Club four shots off the lead but never looked back after making four birdies in a row from the seventh, signing for a closing 65 and a 16 under par total.

Canadian Aaron Cockerill, South African Thriston Lawrence and German Hurly Long finished four shots back but Wu's victory rarely looked in doubt on the back nine as he became the sixth different winner from a sixth different country on the 2022 DP World Tour.

Wu became the third Chinese winner in DP World Tour history when he won the 2015 Volvo China Open and since then he has added wins in Austria and the Netherlands, with this win moving him two victories ahead of countryman Li Haotong.

A two-time winner on the Japan Golf Tour, he will move up to sixth on the DP World Tour Rankings in Partnership with Rolex after triumphing in his 158th appearance with his wife and 13-week-old baby watching on in Nairobi.

"It's a big celebration, I'm so happy with my family here," he said.

"It's a very, very good feeling today to win a championship. It was very tough today, I played very, very well today and made seven birdies.

"After two rounds I told myself if I can make five under every day on the weekend and finish 15 under, I think I'll have a chance to win the tournament.

"Today I was four shots behind and still playing to my plan. Five under was my goal today and after ten holes I had a good feeling and I told myself I'll keep playing and make a couple of birdies and it's fine.

"My short game was good today also, I saved a couple of pars, my putting was good to make birdies on the 17th and 18th, I'm happy."

Lawrence birdied the first and third, made an eagle on the par-five fourth and then picked up a shot on the par-five seventh for the fourth time this week to get to 12 under.

It's a very very good feeling today to win a championship. It was very tough today, I played very very well today and made seven birdies

Ewen Ferguson had started the day four shots clear but when he bogeyed the second and third he found himself in a tie with Lawrence, with Marcus Kinhult briefly joining the lead with a chip-in on the sixth.

A birdie at the par-five tenth moved Lawrence into the solo lead but the players were mounting up at 12 under and Wu was among them.

After bogeying the second, he took advantage of the fourth and seventh, holed a ten footer on the eighth and then made a sensational 35-foot triple-breaker on the ninth to join the lead.

Lawrence played a beautiful chip from over the back of the 14th but missed a short putt to drop a shot, with Wu moving two ahead thanks to a two-putt birdie on the tenth.

Long was playing alongside Lawrence and he had made a big move with birdies on the first, seventh and 11th and an eagle on the tenth.

Back-to-back bogeys on the 13th and 14th looked to have derailed his challenge but he holed a 16-footer on the 15th and made a two-putt birdie on the par-five 18th to join his paying partner in signing for a 66 and finishing at 12 under.

Wu made a brilliant bunker save on the 14th to stay two ahead of the clubhouse leaders and Cockerill, who was the closest challenger on the course.

After making two birdies and two bogeys in his first seven holes, he birdied the eighth, eagled the tenth and then holed from 18 feet at the 11th to sit in the group in second.

He bogeyed the 16th but hit back from 12 feet on the next, although he could not make his birdie on the last, and Wu birdied the 17th from ten feet and got up and down from the sand on the last for another gain and a comfortable victory.

England's David Horsey was at 11 under after a 69, a shot clear of countryman Daniel Gavins and Frenchman Matthieu Pavon and two ahead of Scot Ferguson, Swede Kinhult, Spaniard Adri Arnaus, South African Oliver Bekker and Wales' Stuart Manley.

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