Adri Arnaus wins the Catalunya Champions in a dramatic play-off

Dubai based Adri Arnaus defeated Oliver Bekker in a six-hole play-off to win his first DP World Tour title in stunning fashion at the 2022 Catalunya Championship.

The home favourite started the day seven shots off the lead and did not look a likely winner when he turned in 34, with Bekker and Laurie Canter doing battle at the top of the leaderboard at PGA Catalunya Golf and Wellness.

But he came home in 31 with the help of an eagle on the 12th to set the target at 11 under and was left to watch Bekker, who still had a one-shot lead as Arnaus was signing his card, finish his round.

A three-putt from the South African on the 16th made it a tie as he signed for a 72 and Arnaus was heading to a third DP World Tour play-off in seven months after defeats at the 2021 Acciona Open de España presented by Madrid and March’s MyGolfLife Open hosted by Pecanwood.

 

The five trips back up the last produced reasonably stress-free pars all-round but when they moved to the 17th for the sixth extra hole, Bekker missed the green and could not get up and down, allowing Arnaus to take the title with a par after putting his approach to six feet.

Canter finished two shots out of the play-off alongside fellow Englishman Richard McEvoy and Pole Adrian Meronk, with South African Hennie du Plessis and Italy’s Edoardo Molinari at eight under.

Arnaus came into the week with five runner-up finishes on Tour – two of them on home soil – but now has a win in his 84th start and makes it back-to-back Spanish victories for the first time since 2017 after Pablo Larrazábal‘s triumph at last week’s ISPS Handa Championship in Spain.

He also moves up to sixth on the DP World Tour Rankings in Partnership with Rolex and could move into the top 50 of the Official World Golf Ranking for the first time.

“I just tried to be so much in the present today and in the play-off, and it’s been a long play-off,” he said. “Congratulations of course to Oliver, it’s been an amazing week for him as well but to come through this week is so special.

“I love the fans so much, they came to support and from Monday to Sunday it’s been an amazing week.

“In the Open de España we were close, in a play-off as well, and this time again in a play-off and we made it so I’m super happy.”

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