Matteo Manassero wins PGA Championship at Wentworth

BMW PGA Championship, Wentworth, final leaderboard

  • -10: *M Manassero (Ita), S Khan (Eng), M Warren (Sco) *wins after play-off
  • -9: MA Jimenez (Spa), A Canizares (Spa)
  • -8: E Els (SA), J Kingston (SA), E Pepperell (Eng)
  • -7: F Molinari (Ita), R Ramsay (Sco), L Westwood (Eng)
  • Selected others -5: S Garcia (Spa)
  • -3: D Clarke (NI)
  • -1 : T Bjorn (Den)
  • Level: C Montgomerie (Sco)
  • +1: J Rose (Eng), P McGinley (Ire), M Kaymer (Ger)

Italy's Matteo Manassero became the youngest winner of the PGA Championship when he beat Simon Khan and Marc Warren in a play-off at Wentworth.

The 20-year-old birdied the fourth extra hole to edge 2010 champion Khan after Scotland's Marc Warren dropped out on the first hole.

The trio ended on 10 under, one clear of Spaniards Miguel Angel Jimenez and overnight leader Alejandro Canizares.

Lee Westwood had a two-shot lead after four but carded 73 to end seven under.

Manassero, who has now won four European Tour titles, is 60 days younger than Bernard Gallacher was when the Briton lifted the title in 1969 at the age of 20 years and 97 days.

Matteo Manassero factfile

  • Born: 19 April 1993
  • Birthplace: Negrar, Italy
  • 2009: Youngest winner of British amateur championship at 16
  • 2010: Youngest to make cut at Masters at 16. Surpassed by Guan Tianlang in 2013
  • May 2010: Turned pro
  • October 2010: Won Castello Masters
  • 2011: Won Malaysian Open
  • 2012: Won Singapore Open
  • 2013: Youngest winner of PGA Championship at Wentworth, aged 20

"It's been an amazing week, I've always felt something special about this place and this tournament," said Manassero, who booked his place in the upcoming US Open and Open championship. "I'm the happiest man in the world right now."

The 40-year-old Khan, who came from seven behind in the final round with a closing 66 to win three years ago, fired another 66 to set the clubhouse lead and faced an anxious 90-minute wait to learn his fate.

Manassero reached 10 under on the 13th and parred his way home for a 69 to join Khan. Warren, meanwhile, had four straight birdies from the 10th to edge into the sole lead, but dropped a shot at the 15th to make it a threesome at the top.

Canizares, playing in the final group with Westwood, missed from 18ft on the last for an eagle to join the play-off. The 49-year-old Jimenez, the 2008 champion playing his 600th European Tour event, did eagle the last for a 67 to climb to nine under.

Warrren drove into the trees on the first play-off hole and then found the water to bow out. Khan and Manassero matched each other for two more holes but in lengthening shadows, the Italian opted to take a driver instead of a three-wood off the 18th tee the fourth time around.

Khan took a three-wood but found water with his second as he went for the green. He reached the putting surface in four but Manassero stroked in his birdie putt to win his first event since the Singapore Open last November.

"I was less tense in the play-off than walking the last few holes because you have done all you can in 72 holes and the rest is about trying to hit good normal shots," said Manassero.

Analysis

European golf has much to celebrate with Manassero's victory. He is undoubtedly the brightest young light in the game, and, aged 20, he already has four titles to his name. He is half the age of Lee Westwood. Although the Englishman blames faults in his long game for his failure to win, this remains another big title to escape his clutches. A 69 would have been enough to claim the biggest triumph of his career and in perfect conditions it should have been within his compass. This loss adds to considerable scar tissue accumulated over the years at the game's biggest events.

Khan, who was playing his first event since March as his wife Lesley has been ill, said: "I'm disappointed, I'm desperate to win this again and last time it felt a bit surreal coming from that far back."

Westwood, twice a runner-up at Wentworth, birdied the second, third and fourth to take a two-shot lead at 11 under. He dropped back with bogeys at six and seven but another birdie on the eighth took him to the turn in 33. The Englishman was the leader on his own at 10 under before missing a short putt for par on the 11th.

The world number 12 then dropped two shots on the long 12th after finding the left trees off the tee, and a further bogey on the short 14th signalled the end of his challenge despite a birdie at the last.

"I'm struggling with my swing a little bit and it just gets found out when the pressure is on," said Westwood, who is now based in Florida. "The main problem is I haven't got a safe shot. It's something I'm keeping working on. The short game was good, but I struggled a little bit on the greens."

Open champion Ernie Els, who oversaw a redesign of the West Course in 2010, ended with a 67 to finish eight under alongside fellow South African James Kingston and 22-year-old English rookie Eddie Pepperell.

Spain's Sergio Garcia finished five under after a week of controversy following his ongoing spat with Tiger Woods and his "fried chicken" comment towards the world number one.