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Lawrence wins in Munich for fourth European tour title

Thriston Lawrence Thriston Lawrence - The Canadian Press

MUNICH (AP) — Thriston Lawrence overhauled Joost Luiten in a tense finish to win the BMW International Open by one stroke Sunday for his fourth European tour title.

Lawrence started the final round four strokes off the lead but his 3-under 69, combined with a 2-over 74 for Luiten, was enough for the South African to win on 13-under overall. Luiten bogeyed the 17th and was left needing a birdie on the 18th to force a playoff, but he could only make par.

“It means a lot. I'm a bit emotional, to be honest,” Lawrence said. “This game is not easy. It was a real push today and I really gave it my all. I feel sorry for Joost. I know how tough this game is.”

Lawrence has won all four of his titles in just over a year and a half, since his first at the European tour and Sunshine Tour co-sanctioned Joburg Open in Nov. 2021. He's the second South African to win the BMW International Open after Ernie Els in 2013.

Lawrence's final round Sunday was full of ups-and-downs with eight birdies and five bogeys.

“At some stage, I didn't think I'm going to make a par,” he said. “It was birdie, bogey, birdie, bogey, just taking, giving."

Poland's Adrian Meronk (68), who is chasing a Ryder Cup spot, was one of four tied for third on 11 under, along with Daniel Hillier (71), Rikuya Hoshino (69) and Maximilian Kieffer (68).

The trio another shot behind included Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen (69), who won plaudits for his impressive tour debut on an invite after recently finishing his college golf career at Oklahoma State.