European Tour prodigy Fritelli snatches the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open

A double bill of events on the European Tour concluded with the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open where South Africa’s Dylan Fritelli served further notice of his quality with a play-off victory over India’s Arjun Atwal to move from 21st to second place in the 2018 Race to Dubai.

Fritelli started the week being named European Tour Graduate of the Year after a wonderful rookie season which saw him claim his first title at the Lyoness Open powered by ORGANIC+ en route to a 19th place finish in the season rankings. The 27 year old finished the 2017 season in fine form, taking second place at the Turkish Airlines Open and coming close to victory at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, where he finished in a share of fourth place, two strokes back from winner Spain’s Jon Rahm.

The Challenge Tour graduate picked up where he left off in the new season, following up a tied 16th place finish at the UBS Hong Kong Open last week by pipping Atwul with a birdie at the first play-off hole at the Heritage Golf Club to scoop 186,238 Race to Dubai points, taking his early season total to 213,237 points, 144,473 behind leader Wade Ormsby.

“It’s been a pretty good year for me,” said Fritelli who won two titles during his time on the Challenge Tour. “I’ve set some pretty lofty goals and achieved most of them so I can’t wait for 2018 – set more goals and go and chase them again.”

Romain Langasque finished third in Mauritius to earn 87,185 points to place him in eighth place in the Race to Dubai while fellow Frenchman Matthieu Pavon shared fifth place with Miguel Tabuena of the Phillippines for 45,061 points to move to 15th place in the season rankings after his first event.

The weekend’s European Tour action also took in the hotly contested Australian PGA Championship which was won by Aussie Cameron Smith at RACV Royal Pines Resort in Queensland.

Jordan Zunic missed out at the second hole of a play-off, claiming 127,770 points for his runner up spot to move to seventh place in the Race to Dubai. Harold Varner III finished sixth to gain 40,250 points, moving the American to 12th place in the early season rankings while fellow countryman Sean Crocker earned 31,625 points for his tied seventh place finish to move to 11th in the table.

Race to Dubai leader Australian Wade Ormsby followed up his victory in Hong Kong last week with another strong performance which saw him take a share of ninth place in Australia to earn 24,380 points, solidifying his place at the top of the rankings with 357,710 points from two events.