Alex Noren reflects on an 'unbelievable' win at the Open de France
Alex Noren has admitted he never expected to win the Open de France after snatching an unlikely victory during a dramatic final round at Le Golf National.
The Swede was three-over-par at the halfway stage and was still seven shots adrift of 54-hole leader Marcus Kinhult heading into Sunday, only to fire a four-under 67 and set the clubhouse target at seven under.
Chris Wood and Julian Suri both lost their leads late in their rounds and Jon Rahm bogeyed the last after finding the water, securing Noren a one-shot win and his 10th European Tour title.
“It feels amazing,” Noren said. “I’ve been close this year in America and then like two shots off Francesco [Molinari]’s win at Wentworth.
“When you’re out there, you really want this win, and it felt unbelievable to get it today. I was putting and practising for maybe a play-off, but it was unreal how it went and I didn’t expect that.
2:07 A look back at the top shots from Alex Noren's winning round at the Open de France
“I really didn’t think I was going to win at all. I thought I was going to miss the play-off by one, but as it unfolded, I thought it was going to be a play-off. I got very fortunate with the way it turned out.”
Wood had topped the leaderboard with four holes to go but bogeyed the 15th and 17th holes, leaving the Englishman tied-second and a shot back in his pursuit of a first win since 2016.
2:20 Chris Wood discusses narrowly missing out on Open de France victory and the challenges he faced during the final round
“Trying to win around this golf course is tough,” Wood told Sky Sports. “It seemed like there were so many guys within touching distance today and it seemed it could have gone either way to anybody.
“It was a mentally challenging day, but I hung around. It’s disappointing, but considering I’ve not put myself in contention in bigger events like this it’s a glimpse of light.”