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Cairo: Tomás Gouveia triumphs on the first extra-hole

Dreamland Pyramids Classic 2021

Portugal’s Tomás Gouveia and Kristof Ulenaers of Belgium determined the winner of the 2021 Dreamland Pyramids Classic in a play-off. After 54 holes of the Pro Golf Tour premiere at the Dreamland Golf Resort in Cairo, Egypt, the two professionals initially share first place with 11 under par each; Gouveia then wins with a safe par on the first extra hole of the play-off when Ulenaers only manages a bogey. For the 26-year-old from Faro it is his first tournament win in his professional career.

by Matthias Lettenbichler

Cairo/Egypt – “That was really a tough battle in scorching heat today! Kristof was always there, he didn’t let up, and it was close until the end. Now, of course, I’m incredibly happy that it worked out with my first tournament win as a professional and that I finished this week successfully.” There was a palpable sense of relief on Tomás Gouveia’s face after he clinched victory in the play-off and secured the Dreamland Pyramids Classic 2021 trophy.

The Portuguese played flawlessly in the first round, signing an impeccable scorecard with four birdies and therefore a round of 68. And yet, after 18 holes, he was two strokes behind Belgian Kristof Ulenaers, who completed the classic parkland course at Dreamland Golf Resort with a fantastic 66. But in Round 2, Gouveia took the lead with a round of 67 and was now two strokes ahead of the Belgian. And it remained thrilling on the final day as well: the front nine saw the leaders each play 34 strokes, and when Ulenaers also recorded a 34 on the way back to the clubhouse, but Gouveia a 36, the first play-off of the 2021 season was perfect.

“I played a weak tee shot into the bunker on the 17th,” Gouveia said of the bogey with which he invited Ulenaers to the play-off. However, his opponent could not make good use of his opportunity in the match play duel, landed his first drive in the shrubbery next to the 18th hole and only managed to play a bogey in the end, while Gouveia remained flawless and eventually holed the putt from one metre for par, securing his first win as a professional.

Intensive training during lockdown

Tomás Gouveia, whose brother Ricardo plays on the Challenge Tour, stood on the Pro Golf Tour podium twice in his rookie season in 2018, sharing 2nd place once and 3rd place once. Tied 3rd place was also notched up last week, when he proved his good form at the NewGiza Pyramids Challenge. “I practised really hard during the lockdown and stabilised my game. The weeks here in Cairo have been fantastic, everything just worked, my strokes have been very consistent,” said Gouveia, who also takes over first place in the Pro Golf Tour Order of Merit with his victory. With 7,551 points he now leads the ranking ahead of the Frenchman Mathieu Decottignies Lafon (7,227 points) and the Swiss Marco Iten (6,957 points).

The Pro Golf Tour will now take a break until 30 June, when Round 1 of the Gradi Polish Open by Emeralld 2021 is scheduled in Poland