Kevin Cunningham

January 22, 2023

Victor Perez offered some fireworks Sunday on the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

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Whereas most American golf followers have been quick asleep Saturday evening, some actual drama was unfolding on a golf course half a world away on the DP World Tour’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, the primary DP World occasion of the yr.

A number of former main champions have been within the combine heading into Sunday’s last spherical. Shane Lowry and Francesco Molinari held a share of the lead. Padraig Harrington was two photographs again.

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But it surely was a 30-year-old Frenchman and Ryder Cup hopeful who ended the day on high, and far of it was because of an extremely troublesome bunker hole-out on the second-to-last gap of the event.

Victor Perez started the ultimate spherical at Yas Hyperlinks one shot behind the three co-leaders at 12 below. Driving a torrid entrance 9 stretch, Perez held a slender lead when he reached the seventeenth. However when his tee shot on the par-3 discovered a bunker elevated nicely above the opening, it appeared just like the fairytale ending wasn’t to be.

With a extreme downslope between his ball and the cup, Perez’s solely play was to try to fly it proper to the cup and hope for the perfect. As a substitute, he despatched his ball nicely past the opening and watched because it spun again and in for an unlikely birdie. Test it out beneath.

After the spherical, Perez shared his pondering behind the shot.

“I used to be simply attempting to fly the ball all the way in which to the opening and if it got here up a bit heavy was in all probability going it launch all the way down to the opening and possibly have an 8-footer for par,” Perez stated on Sunday. “Hopefully I make 3 and possibly I make 4 and, then we’re tied with the final gap to go. It got here up possibly a little bit skinny, I’m not going to lie, and spun again and the fortune of the ball going through which might be the best shot I’ve ever hit.”

The opening-out gave Perez a three-shot lead heading to the final, which he would find yourself needing. After Perez made a bogey-6, Min Woo Lee almost holed out an eagle chip that might have despatched them to a playoff. However Lee’s ball burned the sting, and the crown was Perez’s, the third DP World Tour title of his profession.

“I’m delighted to complete on high,” Perez stated after the victory. “It was a loopy end, however I really feel like I’m used to that now. Hopefully I could make it a little bit simpler for the subsequent one.”

You may watch Perez’s emotional response after successful beneath.

Kevin Cunningham Editor

As managing producer for, Cunningham edits, writes and publishes tales on, and manages the model’s e-newsletters, which attain greater than 1.4 million subscribers every month. A former two-time intern, he additionally helps preserve buzzing exterior the news-breaking tales and repair content material offered by our reporters and writers, and works with the tech workforce within the improvement of recent merchandise and progressive methods to ship an enticing web site to our viewers.

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