BMW International Open: Li Haotong holes 50ft putt to beat Thomas Pieters in play-off

Li Haotong
Li Haotong missed the cut 14 times last year
BMW International Open final leaderboard
-22 Li (Chn)*, Pieters (Bel); -20 Fox (NZ); -18 Valimaki (Fin); -17 Larrazabal (Spa), Langasque (Fra), Von Dellingshausen (Ger); -16 Oosthuizen (SA), Smith (Eng)
Selected others: -14 Ramsay (Sco); -12 Ferguson (Sco)
* denotes winner after play-off

China's Li Haotong holed a 50ft putt to beat Belgium's Thomas Pieters in a play-off to dramatically win the BMW International Open in Munich.

Li, 26, who led after the previous three rounds, dodged the water twice on the first play-off hole and thinned a chip past the flag, before draining a birdie putt, with Pieters missing.

It gave the world number 281 his first win in four years.

Afterwards an emotional Li said he considered quitting golf 10 months ago.

"I don't have the words to describe right now," said Li, who missed 14 cuts in 2021 and at one stage dropped to 467th in the world.

"Ten months ago I just literally decided to quit golf, and somehow where I am now, it's just hard to describe.

"I had no idea I could win this play-off. Luckily things happened for me again.

"I tried to hit a lot of good putts today, especially on the back nine - those three putts, including the last one.

"I already knew it was going to be super tough and I just kept telling myself 'hang on in there'.

"It doesn't matter, win or lose - I just want to play my best out there and luckily I did."

Earlier Li needed birdies at the 16th and 17th to take a one-shot lead over Pieters, but his birdie attempt on the 18th lipped out, while the Belgian putted for birdie to force a play-off as they both finished on 22 under par.

New Zealand's Ryan Fox was third on 20 under, while England's Jordan Smith was the highest placed Brit tied for eighth on 16 under.

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