Rookie Aberg surges to European Masters win


Sweden's Ludvig Aberg surged to a two-shot win at the European Masters and right into the Ryder Cup picture for Europe when the six captain's picks are announced on Monday.

Aberg stunned long-time leader Matt Fitzpatrick on Sunday by reeling off four straight birdies, from holes 14 to 17, to card a 6-under 64 for a 19-under total of 261.

England's Fitzpatrick faded to a tie for third, three shots back.

The 23-year-old Aberg turned professional as recently as June after being named the best college player in the United States for a second straight year at Texas Tech University.

In the sun-bathed Swiss Alps on Sunday, Aberg made himself a great option for Europe captain Luke Donald for the Ryder Cup in four weeks' time in Rome.

"I figured a win would put me in a good position," Aberg acknowledged. "Honestly, I've done a pretty good job of not thinking about it too much."

Fitzpatrick had led by three strokes when he birdied the 14th but just 30 minutes – and back-to-back bogeys – later, a five-shot turnaround left Aberg clear by two.

"It's a pretty surreal feeling to be honest," Aberg said of his first win, after just 75 days as a pro golfer. "I always had that (feeling) that I could do it."

Aberg missed his birdie putt on the 18th but it did not matter. Needing eagle on the 18th to force a playoff, Fitzpatrick made bogey for a 1-under 69 and 16 under total, one behind runner-up Alexander Bjork (66).

Fitzpatrick, the 2022 US Open winner, still secured his Ryder Cup place as the third-place finisher on the World Tour points qualification path.

Robert MacIntyre of Scotland also clinched his place in the Europe team at the Marco Simone club near the Italian capital, from September 29 to October 1.

Australia's Jason Scrivener was one of four players to finish on nine under after shooting 65. New Zealand's Daniel Hillier ended with a 70 to finish on one under.