72 for Hurley as Olesen makes it a super seven in Thailand

Ronan MacNamara

Gary Hurley (Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images)

Ronan MacNamara

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Gary Hurley closed with a level-par 72 for a share of 66th place as Thorbjorn Olesen romped to a four-shot win at the Thailand Classic.

Having made the cut with rounds of 71 and 67 the Waterford native never kicked into gear over the weekend and rounds of 75 and 72 saw him drift further down the leaderboard.

The 30-year-old started well with an early birdie on the 2nd before closing his front nine with back-to-back bogeys. Successive birdies on 11 and 12 got him back to the right side of par for the day before a late bogey on 17 meant he would end the day as he started.

At the top of the leaderboard it was plain sailing for Olesen who completed a stress free win in Bangkok.

Olesen’s seventh DP World Tour title sees him climb back inside the top-100 in the OWGR (90th) and it is his second win in nine months having captured the Betfred British Masters in 2022.

The Dane shot a bogey-free 66 to finish on -24, four clear of Germany’s Yannick Paul.

The 33-year-old dropped just three shots all week with his last bogey coming on the 17th hole in round two.

Birdies on 1, 2, 6, 13, 14, 15 kept him in control all day having teed off two clear of Nicolai Hojgaard.

Olesen has shown form of late with a t4 at the Ras Al Khaimah Championship his best finish this season before today.

“It sounds unbelievable. It was a really good day today. I felt really comfortable and like I was playing well, gave myself a lot of good chances. The two birdies on the back nine came on the right time also. It was just a great day and a great feeling to be standing here with this trophy and being a winner again.

“I felt from the beginning there would be someone who would put pressure on me. You can get on a roll on this course and make a lot of birdies. I felt like I could have made a few more during the round, so it was important to stay patient. Those two putts were really nice.

“I felt great, to be honest. I’ve tried it a few times and had quite a few nights where I’ve not slept at all. Last night I slept fine and felt good this morning. It was a bit more comfortable today than I’ve had in the past, I think that’s why I played a lot better and felt more comfortable out there.

“It’s been a while since I’ve been in the top 100 in the world, it feels good. I don’t feel like I’m far away with two victories in nine months. I feel like the way I played today under pressure is something that gives me a lot of confidence going forward. Still a lot of work, but this is a big step in the right direction.”

The 2018 Ryder Cup player has developed a knack of winning and has now converted six of his seven 54-hole leads on the DP World Tour (2012 Sicilian Open, 2014 ISPS HANDA Perth International, 2015 Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, 2016 Turkish Airlines Open, 2022 Betfred British Masters).

As far as his September Ryder Cup aspirations go, Olesen will rise to 12th on the European Points List while Yannick Paul could climb into the top-6 on the list.

“(On the Ryder Cup) It’s always a goal, when you’ve tried it once you want to go back. I know I was a long way behind, but this is a really good start to the year. It’s time to keep going and see if we can get in that team.

“I’ve tried it in Paris and had that experience. You would love to come back and play more Ryder Cups. It’s going to be very difficult but this is certainly a very good start to try and get into that team.”

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