Victor Perez wins Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

Victor Perez wins Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

Frenchman, Victor Perez, has secured victory at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship after an action-packed final day. Perez went into the final round just one shot behind the leaders but shot a sensational 66 to win the biggest tournament of his career to date. 

Going into the final round of action in Abu Dhabi, Shane Lowry, Francesco Molinari, and Min Woo Lee had a share of the lead but there were a whole host of players in contention. While Molinari and Lee stayed in touching distance throughout the final round, Lowry had a day to forget and ended up nine shots behind Perez. 

It is undoubtedly the biggest moment of Perez’s career so far and has catapulted the world number 111 into Ryder Cup contention. It is the Frenchman’s third DP World Tour victory but first in a Rolex Series event. 

A hectic final day 

Victory certainly didn’t come easy for Perez and it nearly all unraveled on the 18th. He hit a fairway bunker off the tee and then shanked his shot out of the sand so badly that he very nearly went out of bounds. To his credit, though, he managed to somehow find a bogey that gave him the clubhouse lead at 18 under par. 

Prior to the 18th, it was a sublime round of golf from Perez. He birdied four of the opening nine holes to earn himself a brief two-shot lead but Min Woo Lee refused to anywhere and continuously pegged him back throughout. 

The pressure seemed to get to Perez halfway through the back nine when he three-putted for a bogey on the 14th to relinquish the outright lead, however, a piece of brilliance on the 17th seemed to deal victory. 

In what was undoubtedly the shot of the tournament, Perez pitched a bunker shot about 5ft over the hole but with enough backspin on the ball to see it fizz back into the bucket. That gave him a cushion going into the 18th, which he ended up needing after scoring a bogey. 

With Perez in the house with -18, the only player on the course who could still threaten him was Sebastian Söderberg. The swede needed a birdie on the final hole to force a playoff but could only manage a par. He ended the week on 17 under, alongside Min Woo Lee. 

min woo lee

Perez talks crazy finish 

After his victory, Perez was understandably overcome with emotion. After first tasting success at the 2019 Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, he won again in the Dutch Open last year. After his third tournament win in Abu Dhabi he looked forward to what else is to come:

“It’s a great year ahead. There’s a lot of big things coming up. I’ve had a really good off-season, I’ve worked really hard and it’s just great.

I got off to a good start and I was just focusing on me and trying to do the best I can, because you can’t control what anyone else is doing. I was trying to plod along, but Soderberg was fantastic, he never gave me an opening.

I’m just delighted to finish on top. It was a crazy finish but I’m used to that by now. Hopefully I can make it a little easier for the next one.”

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