South Korea’s Jeunghun Wang has become the third youngest player in European Tour history to win his first three titles after clinching the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters in a dramatic three-way play-off.
The 21-year-old, who began the final round with a three-stroke advantage, defeated Swede Joakim Lagergren and South African Jaco Van Zyl with a courageous birdie on the first sudden death hole at the Doha Golf Club.
Wang’s early lead had evaporated by the back nine but he recaptured the lead on his own with a birdie on the par-4 16th.
But a bogey on the next dropped him into the play-off at 16 under but after taking a brave line over the back of the green on the first visit back up the 18th, he got up-and-down for a title winning birdie.
Wang’s victory comes in just his 29th European Tour event and at 21 years and 144 days old, he is the third youngest player to win three events after Matteo Manassero and Seve Ballesteros.
Van Zyl looked to be in a driver’s seat when he reached the green of the par-5 18th in two shots, but a second three-putt of the day cost him dearly as he finished runner-up on the European Tour for the fifth time in his 150th event.
Lagergren was also searching for his first European Tour win and he left himself too much work to do when he pulled his second shot in the play-off into the greenside bunker.
Wang, the Sir Henry Cotton Rookie of the Year in 2016, added to his victories at the Trophée Hassan II – also in a play-off – and the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open. He now looks likely to climb into the top-40 of the world ranking, which could earn him an invite to the Masters Tournament in April.
"When I was young, I really wanted to play the Masters," he said. "I always imagined that I would play there. Maybe now I have a chance to play the Masters. So I'm so happy about it and I hope I'm going to get in the Masters. That's my dream, dream tournament.
"This feels really fantastic for me. It's really, really great. I'm so happy.
"I just don't want to get any pressure this year. I just want to learn from the other players. I just want to keep winning, I hope. I've really got a lot of confidence right now, I just want to play another tournament.
"I was really nervous on the back nine. I missed a lot of greens but my chipping was really good today so I saved everything and finally I won.
"I just wanted to try to make birdie at the last. I didn't think about anything. I just wanted to try to make birdie."
Queensland’s Scott Hend, despite suffering the effects of flu, was the only Australian to make the cut. He finished at one over and grabbed a share of 60th place.