Mon, Apr 23, 2007 - Page 20 News List

Raphael Jacquelin leads every round to win Asian Open

AP , SHANGHAI, CHINA

Raphael Jacquelin of France hits a shot out of a bunker during the final round of the Asian Open in Shanghai, China, on Sunday. Jacquelin shot a one over par 73 for the day to win the tournament at 10 under.

PHOTO: EPA

Raphael Jacquelin of France led from start to finish to win the Asian Open by two strokes yesterday for his second European Tour victory.

Jacquelin shot a one-over-par 73 in the storm-affected final round to finish at 10-under for the tournament, which is co-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours.

The win comes as some redemption for last week's China Open, also in Shanghai, where Jacquelin seized the lead after the second round.

Denmark's Soren Kjeldsen finished second at eight-under after shooting a 73, while Australian Scott Hend (75) and Scotland's Simon Yates (74) were another shot back.

"It is a fantastic moment," said Jacquelin, whose maiden tour victory came at the 2005 Madrid Open in Spain after 238 tour starts.

"When you are in a position to win it is always difficult to finish, but to be a winner you have to finish," he said.

Despite the round's start being moved up to 6:30am to avoid thunderstorms, players still battled rain and fierce winds on the Tomson Shanghai Pudong Golf Club's 6,697m course.

Jacquelin was fortunate to start smartly before the wind and rain blew in, picking up three birdies on the front nine. With the changing weather playing havoc with his approaches, he conceded bogies on four of the last six holes.

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