Otaegui Wins Paul Lawrie Match Play For Maiden Title
- Category: Inside Golf
- Published: 2017-08-21
Adrian Otaegui produced a stunning fightback to beat home favourite Marcel Siem 2 and 1 and win his first European Tour title at the Saltire Energy Paul Lawrie Match Play.
Siem was three up at the turn and two up with five holes to play but Otaegui won the 14th with a par and then made three birdies in a row to claim his maiden win in his 123rd event.
The Spaniard came into the week off the back of four consecutive top-20 finishes and was the form player heading into the final having never been taken up the last in his five matches while making 31 birdies and one eagle in 28 under par.
He made nine pars on the front nine as birdies handed Siem the first, fourth and eighth holes but won six of the eight holes after the turn - including the final four - making five more birdies in the process while staying bogey free.
"It's very, very special to have my first European Tour victory here at the Paul Lawrie. I'm so happy," he said. "The way I played the back nine being three down after nine holes, I played good golf.
"Obviously Marcel missed a couple of shots but I was very, very focused, I knew I could do it and the way I finished was just the perfect finish to the week.
"I've been playing very well the whole week. I've made a few mistakes as everybody does. I was very solid the whole week and I ended up with the trophy.
"It's a big combination of things, getting some confidence, knowing I can do it well."
The win is the sixth of the season by a Spanish player while for Siem, his best result of the campaign is a big step in the right direction for a player who teed it up at the Beckenbauer Course on Thursday 125th in the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex.
Siem was fired up from the off and hit an approach to eight feet on the first, pointing at the hole as he made the putt to go one up.
Siem put his third to concession range after laying up on the par five eighth, with Otaegui making another par after being blocked out by trees following his tee-shot.
Otaegui fought back on the par five tenth, birdieing it for the sixth time this week after getting on the green in two, and when Siem could only make par the gap was cut to two shots.
After a poor tee-shot, Siem was short of the green in two on the 11th, allowing Otaegui to win the hole with a par before the par five 12th was halved in birdies with Siem missing an eight-foot eagle putt.
The 37 year old then put his approach to the 13th to two feet for a birdie and a two-hole lead once more but missed a very short par putt on the next to see the gap cut.
A birdie on the 16th after driving over the green on the par four then nudged the 24 year old ahead before he made a 25-foot putt for a birdie on the 17th and the victory.
Swede Johan Carlsson beat Alejandro Cañizares 3 and 2 in the 3rd/4th play-off match as he made three eagles.
Carlsson eagled the third, with a par enough to take him two up on the fourth, before the Spaniard won the sixth and seventh with pars and birdied the ninth to lead at the turn.
But Carlsson came roaring back, eagling the par five 12th, birdieing the 14th and 15th and then eagling the par four 16th for the second time on Sunday after achieving the feat in his semi-final against Siem.