• Rose back on top after first title defence

    Justin Rose on the European Tour
    Rose rose to the top in 2018

    Justin Rose returned to the top of the world rankings after defeating Li Haotong in the first playoff hole to defend his Turkish Airlines Open title.

    Rose becomes the first player to defend a Rolex Series event, a result that lifts him to third in the Race to Dubai rankings.

    • Thomas Aiken bogeyed the last but his final round 70 was enough to book a top 10 finish

    The Englishman started the day three shots behind Li but both took an age to get going at Regnum Carya Golf & Spa Resort as neither produced anything near the kind of shot-making they displayed in the previous three rounds.

    • Darren Fichardt finished in the group sharing 23rd place after two drops in his final three holes

    Rose’s first birdie of the day came on the 7th with Li making the turn one over.

    The final round finally sparked into life as Li moved level with Rose courtesy of an incredible eagle on the 15th as he hit his approach to tap-in range. That wonder shot combined with a three-putt par from Rose sent the pair into a duel down the final three holes.

    England’s Rose then grabbed the initiative with a birdie on the 16th, after both dialled in their approaches, but finished bogey-bogey with Li three-putting the 72nd hole to send the contest back down the 18th.

    A Li three-putt on the first trip back up the par-four last then handed Rose the victory that moves him back to the top of the Official World Golf Ranking.

    Belgian Thomas Detry and Spaniard Adrian Otaegui both signed for rounds of 65 to sit two shots out of the playoff at 15 under. Dane Lucas Bjerregaard and German Martin Kaymer were at 14 under, a shot clear English pair Tommy Fleetwood and Danny Willett, and another Dane in Thorbjorn Olesen.

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