Costly double bogey at last hole see Ryan Fox finish second at Dutch Open
Heartbreak for Kiwi golfer Ryan Fox with another second on the DP World Tour after a double bogey on the final hole at the Dutch Open in the Netherlands cost him victory.
After finishing tied for the lead at 13-under par with France’s Victor Perez it went to a playoff, with Perez winning on the fourth playoff hole.
Perez sunk a long birdie putt on the third playoff hole to deny Fox victory and then secured the win at the following hole with another long putt.
It is Fox’s second straight second placing on the DP World Tour after falling just short of victory at the Soudal Open in Belgium two weeks ago when he also led by three shots on the final day.
Starting the final day in Netherlands a shot off the lead, Fox shot a four-under 68 to finish the tournament at 13-under but the double bogey on the 72nd hole will hurt for a while.
Fox looked certain to win in regulation when he chipped in for a birdie at No. 11, holed from 80 feet for an eagle at No. 12 and then holed from 45 feet for birdie at No. 14 to establish a three-shot lead.
However, the 35-year-old New Zealander drove into water on the 18th, missed the green with his approach, and duffed his fourth shot into a greenside bunker to run up a double-bogey seven.
Playing two groups behind, Perez holed from 35 feet for birdie on the 17th to move into a share of the lead on 13-under par and hit a superb approach into the last, but missed from seven feet for what would have been a winning birdie.
In the playoff, they switched to the 17th hole at Bernardus Golf having matched each other stroke for stroke on three trips down No. 18 in the playoff, with Perez holing birdie putts from 15 feet and then 30 feet to keep it alive.
On the fourth playoff hole, Perez rolled in another long-range putt on the 17th green and Fox missed his.
“There’s a fair amount of fortune, I’ve got to be honest with myself, holing all those long putts in the playoff,” Perez said.
“It’s hard to put into words because it’s a long day and Ryan was flying for a while. We didn’t even really think we had a chance.
Although Fox didn’t get his second win of the season, the result is enough to see Fox qualify for the US Open at the Country Club in a fortnight, his second major of the year, as well as the Open Championship at St Andrews in July.
It continues an amazing run of form going back to his victory at the Ras al Khaimah Classic in February. In his last five tournaments in Europe, Fox have four top 10 finishes.