February 18, 2018 / 2:43 PM / a year ago

Luiten staves off Wood to claim Oman Open title

(Reuters) - Joost Luiten of the Netherlands outplayed England’s Chris Wood on the final stretch of the Oman Open to claim a two-shot win and his sixth European Tour title at Al Mouj Golf on Sunday.

Luiten, 32, fired three birdies on the back nine and carded a four-under-par 68 to stand at 16-under for the tournament and move into the top 10 of the Race to Dubai Rankings.

Wood, who was the Dutchman’s nearest challenger towards the end of the final round, paid the price for a bogey on the 17th after a poor tee shot and had to settle for second place.

“This is why you play golf, to hold trophies. It’s been a great week,” said Luiten. “It’s always tough to win out here, all these guys are so good and keep putting pressure on you.

“Down the stretch I hit some nice shots, I made some nice putts and it was a nice battle with my friend Woody. I need to win another couple to get into the Ryder Cup Team but it’s a great start to the year for me.”

Julien Guerrier of France, who shared the overnight lead with Luiten, finished third after a round of 71 while fellow contender Matthew Southgate of England slipped down to eighth.

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Clare Fallon

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