Justin Rose wins Turkish Airlines Open for back-to-back comeback titles

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Justin Rose wins Turkish Airlines Open for back-to-back comeback titles

Euro Tour

Justin Rose wins Turkish Airlines Open for back-to-back comeback titles

Justin Rose has turned the European Tour’s Race to Dubai into a sprint.

Rose’s Turkish Airlines Open victory, his second straight win following last week’s WGC–HSBC Championship, has put him in contention with Tommy Fleetwood to finish the year as European No. 1, with Sergio Garcia and Jon Rahm still in the race. Englishman Tyrrell Hatton has an outside chance, too.

Rose fired a closing 6-under 65 to take the $1.1 million first-place check. His 18-under 266 total gave him a one-shot victory over 36-hole leader Nicolas Colsaerts and South Africa’s Dylan Frittelli. Padraig Harrington finished fourth.

Rose only had one blemish on his card. He bogeyed the par-4 third hole after birdieing the second. He then made six more birdies to bring home the title. He and playing companion Colsaerts were tied for the lead on 17 under along with Frittelli when they reached the 18th tee. Rose broke the deadlock with a birdie, his third in four holes. It was a first in his long, and illustrious career.

“This is the first time I’ve gone back-to-back,” Rose said.

The Englishman arrived in Turkey ranked third on the European money list, over 1,000,000 points behind No. 1 Fleetwood and trailing Garcia by just under 185,000. He picked up 985,495 points to jump over Garcia. He is now just 134,838 points behind Fleetwood, who finished 23rd in Turkey. Rahm, who also skipped Turkey, trails Fleetwood by just over 1.2 million points. Hatton is 1.5 million points adrift.

Fleetwood has a chance to put some more distance between himself and Rose in this week’s $7.5 million Nedbank Challenge since Rose is taking the week off before the end of season DP World Tour Championship, Dubai.

Overnight leaders Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Shane Lowry finished sixth and eighth, respectively. Aphibarnrat returned a level-par 71, while Lowry struggled to a 1-over 72.

Colsaerts’ second-place finish was a welcome return to form for the man who helped Europe win the 2012 Ryder Cup. The Belgian shone in that event, but is still looking for his first victory since that year’s Volvo World Match Play Championship.

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