2004: Keep the putter in the bag: Cevaer holes out – twice

Fuerteventura, Canary Islands

Aces and hole-outs generally are reserved for the tidbits of golf coverage. They are exciting and fun to watch, but most times they don’t have a whole lot of effect on the outcome.

But twice in little more than two months on the PGA European Tour, holes-in-one and eagle-2s have played a huge role in determining the winner of a tournament.

France’s Christian Cevaer had hole-outs on two par 4s in a round of 69 April 25 and won the Spanish Open by one stroke at 9-under-par 271. Peter Hedblom (70), Ricardo Gonzalez (71) and David Park (72) finished one shot back.

Cevaer holed a pitching wedge from 137 yards for a 2 at the 367-yard first hole. His second eagle came when he sank a 50-yard wedge shot on the 349-yard 16th. The good fortune was not lost on Cevaer.

“I know how tough it is to win,” said Cevaer, a first-time winner and a member of the European Tour since 1994. “I’m happy to have clinched in one of the first opportunities I’ve had.”

Cevaer’s heroics come eight weeks after Thongchai Jaidee made a hole-in-one on the 16th hole of the final round at the Malaysian Open, powering a two-stroke victory.

First, Cevaer eagled No. 1, bogeyed No. 2, then moved into position to contend with birdies on Nos. 3 and 5. But after Cevaer dropped four shots in the next eight holes, it looked as if Gonzalez was in good position to become the first player since Vijay Singh in 2001 to win consecutive European Tour events.

Gonzalez, who won the Sevilla Open April 18, had a three-stroke lead with three holes to play Sunday at Fuerteventura Golf Club. But then came an incredible four-shot swing on No. 16, where Cevaer holed his second eagle of the day and Gonzalez made double bogey after pulling his drive out of bounds.

– Staff and wire reports

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