Nacho Elvira Wins Enthralling Cazoo Open

Nacho Elvira Wins Enthralling Cazoo Open

Nacho Elvira Cazoo
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Nacho Elvira defeated Justin Harding at the first playoff hole to claim his maiden European Tour title at Celtic Manor.

Nacho Elvira Wins Enthralling Cazoo Open

Elvira had started the day with a comfortable six-shot lead. However, at the final hole, he would three-putt from 18-foot to fall into a playoff with Harding.

It seemed that the Spaniard had settled his nerves with only four holes remaining as he hit a stunning tee shot at the driveable par-4 15th, leading to a birdie, before a clutch two at the par-3 17th put him one shot ahead.

Finding the green with his third, he would only need to two-putt to claim his first European Tour win in 195 starts, but he raced the birdie putt by and missed the par putt coming back.

Nacho Elvira Cazoo

It seemed that Elvira's chances had gone after his three-putt. (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

There would be redemption for Elvira though as he made a par at the first playoff hole to finally get over the winning line.

Speaking after his round, the Spaniard said: "I'm speechless right now to be honest. I thought I had it pretty much all under control and I just got nervous over the last couple of putts on the regular 18. I was more calm in the playoff than I was in the 18.

"It's a shame to see someone miss a putt. I image that's how they felt when they saw me miss it, but I can't believe I've won."

After rounds of 64, 67 and 66, the 34-year-old sat safely ahead of a number of players.

But an opening bogey was followed by another at the 5th, with the Spaniard's inconsistencies eventually leading to a level-par front nine.

As he continued to struggle, Finland's Mikko Korhonen was mounting a charge with six birdies in 15 holes putting him at 16-under-par for the tournament.

The Finn was soon joined by 35-year-old Harding, who was also enjoying a good day around the 2010 course.

Nacho Elvira Cazoo

Harding reacts after missing a putt on the first playoff hole. (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

Harding, who had also made six birdies in 15 holes, drew level with Korhonen at 16-under-par.

As the the closing stages drew nearer and nearer, Elvira, who by now was at one-over-par for his round, reacted brilliantly, sticking his drive on the short 15th to under 20-foot.

Although he missed the eagle putt, the birdie seemed to reignite the Spaniard, with his birdie putt on the 17th sparking a strong fist pump and a one shot lead going down the last.

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Having only made five cuts in 15 starts this season, Elvira found the green in three, with 18-foot left for victory.

But, in dramatic fashion, he would three-putt, dropping himself into a playoff with Harding.

In the playoff, the Spaniard redeemed himself, by parring the par-5 and claiming his first win in 195 starts.

"It feels like all the hard work has paid off a little bit, we still have to keep working to keep getting into these positions," said Elvira.

Matt Cradock
Staff Writer

Matt joined Golf Monthly in February 2021 covering weekend news, before also transitioning to equipment and testing. After freelancing for Golf Monthly and The PGA for 18 months, he was offered a full-time position at the company in October 2022 and continues to cover weekend news and social media, as well as help look after Golf Monthly’s many buyers’ guides and equipment reviews.

Taking up the game when he was just seven years of age, Matt made it into his county squad just a year later and continues to play the game at a high standard, with a handicap of around 2-4. To date, his best round came in 2016, where he shot a six-under-par 66 having been seven-under through nine holes. He currently plays at Witney Lakes in Oxfordshire and his favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.

Matt’s current What’s In The Bag?

Driver: Honma TW747, 8.75°

Fairway Wood: TaylorMade Rocketballz Stage 2, 15°, 19°

Hybrid: Adams Super Hybrid, 22°

Irons: Mizuno MP54, 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Tour Satin, 50°, 56°, 60°

Putter: Cleveland TFI 2135 Satin Cero

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x