Australia's Hend beats Que in playoff for Hong Kong crown

Reuters News
Posted: Oct 19, 2014 6:54 AM

(Reuters) - Scott Hend clinched his maiden European Tour title at the Hong Kong Open on Sunday when the Australian saved a par on the crucial 18th hole to force a playoff in which he prevailed over Filipino Angelo Que.

Hend, 41, holed a par putt on the first play-off hole after Que had missed the green on the 18th and ended with a bogey.

The pair finished tied on 13-under-par 267 at the Hong Kong Golf Club in Fanling with Ireland's Kevin Phelan finishing third two strokes behind in the tournament, co-sanctioned with the Asian Tour.

Momentum was with Que who hit a great approach shot on the final regulation hole for his seventh birdie in the round of four-under-par 66.

Hend, who previously had five victories on the Asian Tour, started second on the leaderboard and needed a tricky save after finding sand on the 18th. He managed to sink his putt to card a three-under 67 in his final round and tie Que for the playoff.

"I felt quite calm, the only thing is that hole at the end you never want to have a go at the pin because you can make a bogey quiet easily so I wasn't really sure how to play it," the big-hitting Australian said.

"Unfortunately Angelo made a bogey, I would have rather one of us made a birdie because he's a great guy and it would be nice to earn the win on a positive note.

"But I'll take the win and I'm ecstatic.

"I'm very happy to get this done, and my kids Aston and McLaren and my wife Leanne back in Florida -- this one's for my kids and this one’s to be treasured."

With his win at the co-sanctioned event, Hend also got his playing rights for Europe next season.

Four-times major winner Ernie Els signed off with 69 for a share of the fifth place at 271.

(Writing by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; editing by Amlan Chakraborty)