Pablo Larrazabal wins KLM Open by 2 shots for 9th title on European tour

CROMVOIRT, Netherlands (AP) — Spanish golfer Pablo Larrazabal won the KLM Open by two strokes on Sunday to claim his ninth title on the European tour and a second in the space of four weeks.

The 40-year-old Larrazabal started the final round with a one-stroke lead and shot 3-under 69 at Bernardus Golf.

Larrazabal punched the air repeatedly and beat his chest after rolling in a putt from 21 feet at the last for a third birdie in his final four holes. He finished on 13 under par overall.

His round began badly after making a double-bogey 6 at No. 2 when his tee shot found the water, but he recovered with back-to-back birdies from No. 6 and then came home in 32.

“It was a battle with myself,” Larrazabal said. “I didn’t play well. I managed myself out there, holed a few great putts on the front nine and did my best to keep myself in position, then three birdies in the last four.

“To win golf tournaments, you have to make birdies at the end. It doesn’t matter how fast you run at the beginning, you have to run faster at the end to win the race.”

Larrazabal also won the Korea Championship last month and is playing some of the best golf of his career, which has included standout victories at the Abu Dhabi Championship in 2014 and the French Open — his first tour title — in 2008.

Fellow Spaniard Adrian Otaegui birdied the last, too, to shoot 70 and finish alone in second place.

Rasmus Hojgaard of Denmark (71) and Deon Germishuys of South Africa (69).

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