Carlos Balmaseda eagles third extra hole to win Golf Citizen Classic at Els Club Dubai

The Spaniard produced a fine approach to hit the green in two at the par-5, 18th and holed the ensuing 18-foot putt, beating England’s Luke Joy, who had eagled the same hole in regulation play to force a play-off at six under.
Spain's Carlos Balmaseda with the winner's trophy on September 21, 2016. Courtesy Mena Golf Tour
Spain's Carlos Balmaseda with the winner's trophy on September 21, 2016. Courtesy Mena Golf Tour

Carlos Balmaseda eagled the third extra hole to win the Golf Citizen Golf Classic for his first victory on the Mena Golf Tour at the Els Club Dubai on Wednesday.

The Spaniard, who had been a runner-up twice before in Mena Golf Tour events, produced a fine approach to hit the green in two at the par-5, 18th and holed the ensuing 18-foot putt, beating England’s Luke Joy, who had eagled the same hole in regulation play to force a play-off at six under.

See more on Golf Citizen Classic:

• Round 2: Bogey-free round sees Lee Corfield storm through to take lead at Els Club Dubai

• Round 1: Rayhan Thomas shares lead after opening round of Golf Citizen Classic at Els Club Dubai

Both players birdied the first two extra holes to extend play, but the Spaniard, who closed with a 70, atoned for his bogey-bogey finish to his round with a solid putt to clinch the trophy.

“I took a relaxed attitude into the play-off and that paid off,” said Balmaseda, 44, of his tactics in the play-off.

“Of the seven play-offs that I have played in my professional career, I have won six. So, the confidence was there. Luke is a great player and I needed to focus hard.”

Joy, a two-time winner on the tour, closed with a 71 and felt he had his chances but did not play great on the front nine he covered in two-over par.

“It was nice to finish with an eagle and force play-off,” the Englishman said.

“I think it’s time I start winning the trophies again. I am knocking on the door and hope it will open soon.”

Dubai-based Indian teenager Rayhan Thomas carded a 71 after making the turn at two over to finish in a tie for third at five under, alongside Max Williams of England, Antonio Costa of Chile and the Swedish duo of Fredrik Lindblom and Per Barth.

Thomas took the leading amateur honours while the Moroccan duo of Faycal Serghini and Ahmed Marjan shared the leading Mena Division professional award after the two finished level on one-under par for the tournament.

Comeback of the day belonged to Joshua White, who recovered from a triple bogey on the fifth hole to hit 67 to finish in a tie for eighth place on four under.

“It was kind of a roller-coaster round,” said White of his 18 holes.

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Published: September 21, 2016 04:00 AM

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