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Thrills and spills at the Turkish Airlines Open

The Turkish Airlines Open has once again drawn to a thrilling close, with the final taking place on the 1st November 2015. This year’s event took place at the Montgomerie Maxx Royal in Antalya, Turkey. As usually, the conditions were perfect for the players to be able to show off their skills, and many brilliant golfers stepped up to the challenge.

Going into the final day, the top three positions were made up of Frenchman Victor Dubuisson and South African Jaco Van Zyl (tied on 16 under par), Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy and Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat (tied on 15 under par) and Korean Byeong-hun An and Britain’s Chris Wood (both on 13-under par). Van Zyl had maintained his strong position after shooting a sensational 61 on the first day, but Dubuisson had managed to hunt him down in the latter half of day 3, holing 4 birdies in the last 6 holes.

At the midway point of the final day, it looked as though Van Zyl was going to be able to cling on to his share of the lead, with Dubuisson dropping a few shots during the first half, and losing ground on the leaders. Peaks and troughs in both Van Zyl’s and Aphibarnrat’s game lead to a game of cat and mouse between the two, resulting in them being tied on 18-under after 9 holes. During the first part of the day, both golfers had briefly held the lead of the tournament by themselves.

Ultimately though, Dubuisson’s excellent performance in the back 9, contrasted with Van Zyl’s distinctly average score, allowed him to snatch victory from South African. Van Zyl was in the lead as he stepped up to the 17th, but he could not hold back the rolling juggernaut that took the form of Dubuisson. By pulling out three birdies in the last four holes, Dubuisson was able to catch and pass Van Zyl to top the final leader board by one shot. Kiradech Aphibarnat completed the top three coming home with two shots more than the winner. Rory McIlroy finished tied in sixth place, alongside PeterUilein.

This is the second time that Dubuisson has won a leg of the European tour, and this victory has helped to move him up to seventh place in The Race to Dubai. Personal reasons had prevented him from competing in as many tournaments as he would have liked to over the course of this year, but Dubuisson has announced that his performance in the Turkish Airlines Open has helped to give him some of his confidence back.

Players were quick to praise the marvellous Montgomerie Maxx Royal course, which has previously been voted as being amongst the top 100 golf courses in the world. Designed with the help of professional golfer Colin Montgomerie, the course bears all of the hallmarks that you would expect to be associated with such a unique golf star. Having hosted the Turkish Airlines Open on previous occasions, the course had already developed a reputation for hosting wonderful competitions.

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