Ryo Hisatsune stages comeback to win French Open as Jordan Smith falters
Posted : 25 September 2023
Jordan Smith lost a significant six-shot lead during the final round of the French Open, allowing Ryo Hisatsune to claim victory.
Smith, the English golfer, had been leading alongside Scotland's Ewen Ferguson going into the last day, with a promising start of birdies on the first and second holes.
However, Smith struggled as he carded a one-over-par 72, his poorest score of the tournament, ultimately finishing at 12 under.
In contrast, Japan's Hisatsune delivered an impressive performance, making five birdies on the back nine and shooting a 66 to reach 14 under.
This secured him the title, with Smith and Denmark's Jeff Winther sharing the second-place spot.
Ferguson's hopes dwindled after a closing round of 76, which included double bogeys on the opening two holes.
Hisatsune, just 21 years old, became the third Japanese golfer to win on the European Tour, following in the footsteps of Isao Aoki in 1983 and Hideki Matsuyama, who secured his first win in 2016.
Reflecting on his victory, Hisatsune expressed his confidence and acknowledged a bit of luck in his performance, emphasizing his focus on golf rather than the result during the back nine.
The triumph occurred at Le Golf National, the same venue for the Paris 2024 Olympic golf tournament, adding an extra layer of significance to Hisatsune's achievement.
With the victory in hand, he humorously mentioned the possibility of upgrading to business class for his return trip to Japan.