In a last mastered round at Pont-Royal at the Hopps Open de Provence, the Swede Joel Sjöholm went this Sunday at the age of 37 to seek his second career success on the Challenge Tour. After an excellent last day, Sébastien Gros and Adrien Saddier entered the top 10.
Joel Sjöholm, results
For the first time this week, the leader kept his property at the end of the day. Joel Sjöholm did it at the best time to clinch his second career win over Europe's second tier. The explosive Swede with long socks à la Payne Stewart was very solid in this last round concluded in 67 (-5).
If a bogey at 6 has marred his card, the one who has 163 starts on the DP World Tour has mainly recorded six birdies. “It was a great last round, I putted really well and played good golf overall. I didn't make any big mistakes."
In a season where he divided his time between the European elite (15 tournaments for only 5 cuts) and the Challenge Tour (9 tournaments), Joel Sjöholm comes to take his revenge on 2018 where he finished second behind Romain Langasque.
“I will finally be able to have my photo next to him and that makes me happy,” he laughed. He is ahead of the Englishman Daniel Brown and the South African Deon Germishuys by one point, thanks in particular to a weekend ended in -12.
After his 67 (-5) of the moving day, Sébastien Gros confirmed this Sunday at Mallemort in the Bouches-du-Rhône. The one who has two career victories on the Challenge Tour signed a 66 (-6) free of any errors to conclude the event in sixth place.
“A game without bogey was very good with two good birdies to finish, an overall map under control. I didn't have a game category that allowed me to play everything this year. I had a few good weeks, others with less success.
I needed a slightly more convincing result to save me for next year. Having a full category and making a real schedule would be a good thing, I hardly played for six months and suddenly I did eight consecutive weeks, it's not at all optimal and it's not is not easy with this kind of calendar.
He is ahead of his compatriot Adrien Saddier by one length. The 30-year-old from Haute-Savoie had however started his day badly with a bogey at 1 then a double at 3. But he recovered on the follow-up with no less than nine birdies on the follow-up against a single new bogey for a card of 67 (-5).
With this ninth place, he recorded his second top 10 of the season. “All week I started badly but the attitude and the golf were good. I created plenty of chances, nine birdies is a good card. It's nice, it's only the second top 10 of the season and I need points at the end of the year.
Until the 72nd hole Robin Sciot-Siegrist was also in the top ten of the ranking. Author of three birdies on the first 14 holes of the layout designed by Severiano Ballesteros, he conceded a first bogey at 15 on a somewhat short green attack before committing a new error at 18.
The left-hander still ranks 11th after this last card of 71 (-1) and consolidates its place in the top 10 of the general. With a final 69 (-3), David Ravetto entered the top 20 (17th), his fifth in a row after notably his defeat in the play-off in Portugal two weeks ago.
Félix Mory and Franck Daux follow him by one point (-6, 21st), Clément Sordet and Ugo Coussaud have fallen to 28th place after their card above par (+1).