Matt Fitzpatrick beats Scott Hend in European Masters play-off
By Ali Stafford
Last Updated: 10/09/17 6:41pm
Matt Fitzpatrick claimed his fourth European Tour title with a dramatic play-off victory over Scott Hend at the Omega European Masters.
The Englishman fired a six-under 64 at Crans-sur-Sierre to finish on 14 under alongside Hend - who also lost in a play-off at last year's event - before beating the Australian with a par at the third sudden-death hole.
Fitzpatrick sank a five-footer to exchange pars at the first extra hole, with Hend missing a birdie attempt for victory from a similar distance at their next visit to the 18th.
Hend hit the grandstand from the bunker at the third play-off hole and saw his next chip finish inches from the water on his way to a bogey-five, allowing Fitzpatrick to snatch victory with a two-putt par.
Taking a three-shot lead into the final round, Hend posted back-to-back bogeys from the third and lost his outright advantage when Ashun Wu posted four consecutive gains from the fifth.
Wu bogeyed the next close a front-nine 32, while Hend rolled in from 10 feet at the fifth and added gains at the seventh and ninth to move one ahead at the turn.
Fitzpatrick moved up the leaderboard with a hat-trick of birdies from the sixth and holed another from 10 feet at the 10th, before moving alongside Hend with a two-putt gain at the 14th.
The Englishman, playing two groups ahead of Hend, birdied the 15th and drained a 20-footer at the next to briefly pull two ahead of the chasing pack.
Hend converted a 10-foot gain at the 15th close the gap, with Fitzpatrick bogeying the penultimate hole to drop back alongside the Australian and force extra holes.
Tyrrell Hatton birdied four of his final seven holes to join Fabrizio Zanotti in a share of third spot on 11 under, with Mikko Ilonen a further stroke back in fifth spot after a joint-low round-of-the-day 64.
Defending champion Alex Noren and Lee Slattery carded matching 66s to end tied-ninth alongside Darren Fichardt, as Lee Westwood finished his 500th European Tour appearance in tied-54th.