Kearney best of the Irish as Wu claims Magical Kenya Open

Adam McKendry
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Kearney best of the Irish as Wu claims Magical Kenya Open

Niall Kearney (Photo by Octavio Passos/Getty Images)

A two-under-par final round 69 saw Niall Kearney finish the best of the Irish after an average week on the DP World Tour as he secured a 34th-placed result at the Magical Kenya Open in Nairobi.

The Royal Dublin man closed with three birdies in his last four holes to drag himself back up the leaderboard after struggling for most of his round having laboured to two birdies and three bogeys in his first 14 holes.
At five-under for the week at Muthaiga Golf Club, Kearney takes home €12,337.50 for his 34th-placed result, his best finish on the DP World Tour since the Dutch Open in September.
The only other Irishman to finish under-par was Greystones man Paul Dunne, who rounded out his week with a one-under 70, a birdie on his final hole taking him under-par for the first time since early in his second round.
The 29-year-old cancelled out three bogeys with three birdies prior to that and in a share of 51st, he would walk away with €6,066.67 in prize money and a first finish on the DP World Tour since May’s Betfred British Masters.
It was a wild final day for Clandeboye’s Jonathan Caldwell as he carded three double-bogeys, three bogeys and seven birdies in a two-over 73 in his final round to finish his week three-over in a share of 65th, earning him €3,937.50 and a best finish on Tour since November’s AVIV Dubai Championship.
And Cormac Sharvin concluded his week in style, finishing birdie-eagle for a one-under 70 that saw him walk away with €2,617.50 in 74th at six-over after a streak of eight non-finishes in his last nine events.

The winner was China’s Ashun Wu, who stormed through the field to claim a comfortable four-shot win and the €297,500 prize as a five-under 66 took him to 16-under and made him the first ever Chinese winner in Africa.

Wu Ashun the 2022 Magical Kenya Open Champion – Photo by Getty Images.
With four-shot overnight leader Ewen Ferguson collapsing under pressure on day four, the Scot eventually signing for a five-over 76 that meant he finished in eighth at nine-under, it opened the door for someone to take advantage and it was Wu who did so.
The 36-year-old, now a four-time winner on the DP World Tour, cancelled an early bogey at the second with a birdie at the par-five fourth and then seized control of the leaderboard with four consecutive birdies around the turn to pull clear of the field.
Wu then consolidated his position with seven straight pars before putting some daylight between himself and the chasing pack with back-to-back birdies to close and claim the title.
“It’s a very good feeling today to win this championship. It was very tough today, I played very well today and made seven birdies,” said Wu, the most successful Chinese player in DP World Tour/European Tour history.
“After two rounds I told myself, if I can make five under every day on the weekend and finish 15-under, I think I’ll have a chance to win the tournament.

“Today I was four shots behind and still playing to my plan. Five-under was my goal today and after ten holes I had a good feeling, and I told myself I’ll keep playing and make a couple of birdies and it’s fine.

“My short game was good today also, I saved a couple of pars, my putting was good to make birdies on the 17th and 18th, which I’m happy about. I think a lot of Chinese people came to support me and I was happy to see them. It’s going to be a big celebration with my family here in Kenya with me, I’m so happy.”

Germany’s Hurly Long and South Africa’s Thriston Lawrence both signed for five-under 66s to finish as the Chinese’s closest competitors for the week at 12-under, with England’s Aaron Cockerill joining them after a closing 67 of his own.

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