Luiten wins inaugural Oman Open


Joost Luiten emerged from the leading pack on Sunday to claim his sixth European Tour title at the inaugural Oman Open.

With ideal conditions and 10 players within four strokes of the leaderboard going into Sunday, a potential shootout at the NBO Oman Open whittled down to friends Luiten and Wood. Guerrier never looked poised to win his first tournament, but the Frenchman rallied nicely to with three birdies in his final seven holes to earn solo third at 13-under behind Wood at 14-under.

Wood hit the pin on the first and made a birdie to join the lead but a hat-trick of gains from the second moved Luiten three shots ahead. Wood dropped a shot at the 17th and Luiten parred the last two holes, finishing two clear and claiming the victory.

Ideal conditions at Al Mouj Golf greeted the players for the fourth day in a row, with Luiten going out in the final group and holding a share of the overnight lead. All these guys are so good and they'll keep putting pressure on you, so you've got to keep playing good golf. "I hit some nice ones in close and rolled in a couple of nice putts and that gets you in the right position, where you want to be".

The 32-year-old Dutchman shot a 4-under 68 to finish on 16-under 272, two shots ahead of his friend, England's Chris Wood (69).

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The duo enjoyed an enthralling nip-and-tuck battle down the back nine but when Luiten holed a 25-foot birdie putt on the 16th to get to 16 under and Wood bogeyed the next, the title was Luiten's. He won twice in 2013, the Lyoness Open and KLM Open.

"You play poorly for six or eight months without ever thinking you'd put yourself in contention in a tournament and then when you do you're gutted when you don't win", Wood told the European Tour.

Darren Clarke, who made back-to-back European Tour cuts for the first time since 2016, closed with rounds of 78 and 75 to finish tied 61st on four-over par.

"I'm pretty down but in the grand scheme of things it's night and day to how I've been", said Wood.