July 18, 2024

Van Driel wins maiden title at Magical Kenya Open

Van Driel wins maiden title at Magical Kenya Open
van Driel

A commanding start with a 66 set the tone for the Dutch golfer, who maintained consistency throughout the week, conceding just four bogeys en route to a 14-under total.

Darius van Driel claimed his maiden DP World Tour title in wire-to-wire fashion with a closing 67 at the Magical Kenya Open at the Muthaiga Golf Club on Sunday 25 February 2024.

A commanding start with a 66 set the tone for the Dutch golfer, who maintained consistency throughout the week, conceding just four bogeys en route to a 14-under total. This secured him a two-stroke victory over England's Joe Dean and Spain's Nacho Elvira.

Dean, a recent graduate from the Qualifying School who was delivering packages just the week prior, had a chance for eagle on the final hole but settled for a birdie, while a skillful chip from the leader sealed the win comfortably.

The competition at Muthaiga Golf Club remained tight, with a four-way tie for the lead midway through the round until Van Driel's eagle on the tenth propelled him ahead.

Van Driel's journey in golf has been extraordinary, including overcoming a hand injury sustained in a banana boat accident. Despite setbacks, he turned professional after a strong showing at the 2015 Alps Tour Q-School, eventually earning his spot on the European Challenge Tour.

While experiencing ups and downs in his career, including losing his tour card temporarily, he persevered, reclaiming it at the Qualifying School and now celebrating his first victory on the DP World Tour, making history for Dutch players.

Reflecting on his achievement, Van Driel expressed his emotions, emphasizing how the win fulfilled childhood dreams of success on the professional circuit. Strategically, he had targeted a specific score to secure victory, remaining composed under pressure.

Throughout the final round, various contenders emerged, with Manuel Elvira making an early move before Van Driel's decisive play. Despite challenges from competitors like Matthew Jordan and Nacho Elvira, Van Driel's nerveless performance ensured his triumph.

As the tournament concluded, Van Driel's lead remained intact, with Dean and Manuel Elvira securing strong finishes alongside other notable contenders. Frenchman Jeong weon Ko's impressive closing round capped off the event.