Luiten wins the NBO Oman Open

Joost Luiten shones as the Man in Oman after winning the inaugural NBO Oman Open at Al Mouj Golf, with two shots lead over Chris Wood.

Joost Luiten wins NBO Oman Open

Feb 18, 2018: Joost Luiten got the better of Chris Wood in a final-day battle to win his sixth European Tour title at the inaugural NBO Oman Open.

Al Mouj Golf has played host to some dramatic scenes on the Challenge Tour, hosting the season-ending NBO Golf Classic Grand Final, and did not disappoint on its European Tour debut.

Perfect conditions greeted the players for the fourth day in a row, with Luiten going out in the final group and holding a share of the overnight lead.

There were ten players within four shots of the lead as the final group reached the turn but it evolved into a shootout between Luiten and Wood on the back nine, with the experienced duo going toe-to-toe in the desert.

It was the Dutchman who prevailed, carding a 68 to get to 16 under and finish two shots ahead of his English rival.

Frenchman Julien Guerrier finished third at 13 under after a 71, two shots clear of Spaniard Jorge Campiilo, Frenchman Alexander Levy and American Han Seung-su.

The victory is Luiten’s first since he won his home event for the second time at the KLM Open in 2016 and moves him into the top ten of the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex, earning him a spot in the WGC – Mexico Championship.

Down the stretch I hit some nice shots, I made some nice putts and it was a nice battle with my friend Woody – Joost Luiten

For Wood, the runners-up finish represents a welcome return to form after he had missed his first three cuts of the season.

A bogey-bogey finish on Saturday dropped Wood out of the lead but a smart approach into the first quickly had him into a share of top spot alongside Luiten.

Luiten then hit a perfect drive on the second and that allowed him to get close and make a birdie and he was soon three ahead.

The 32 year old stretched his advantage to two shots when he holed from the fringe on the third and an approach to tap-in range on the next gave him a seemingly comfortable cushion.

Wood rolled in a 15-footer on the sixth to make himself Luiten’s nearest challenger and the leader made his first mistake of the day when he three-putted from off the green on the seventh after laying up.

Another three-putt on the next led to another bogey and dropped Luiten into a share of the lead with Wood.

The 2016 Ryder Cup player got up and down from the sand on the 12th to lead on his own but Luiten also took advantage of the par five and when he holed a 15-footer on the par three next, he was back ahead.

A beautiful bunker shot on the 16th set up another birdie for Wood and it was now a two-horse race between the leading duo.

Luiten holed a 25-footer on the par five to get his nose in front and when Wood dropped a shot ahead on the 17th after a poor tee-shot, Luiten was in control.

Guerrier matched his best European Tour finish from the 2014 Madeira Islands Open – Portugal – BPI as he bounced back from bogeys on the ninth and tenth with birdies on the 12th, 14th and 16th.

Campillo and Han both signed for rounds of 68, with Levy carding a 70 to sit a shot ahead of England’s Robert Rock and Paraguayan Fabrizio Zanotti.

Scot Stephen Gallacher, Frenchman Benjamin Hebert and England’s Matthew Southgate were then at nine under.

European Tour Release

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