Kurt Kitayama of Chico is making a name for himself on the European Tour.
The 26-year-old Kitayama claimed his second victory on the Euro circuit in three months, made two birdies on the last three holes to win the weather-delayed Oman Open by one stroke over Jorge Campillo of Spain, Maximilian Kieffer Germany, Clément Sordet of France and Fabrizio Zanotti of Paraguay at El Mouj Golf www.elmoujgolf.com in Muscat, Oman.
“This one feels really good because when I won the first one I was playing really well and it just felt like it was coming,” said Katayama, who captured the Afrasia Bank Mauritius Open in December.
“This week I came in off three missed cuts and not having good weekends in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. It feels great to grind through all of that. The way we started that third round, I was like, ‘Can we stop right now?’ It gave me a refresh and it was incredible coming back.”
Kitayama, who played college golf at Nevada Las Vegas, had to endure 33 holes on a marathon final day after a windstorm on Friday put the event behind schedule, finished with a 2-under-par 70 and a total of 7-under 281. He was in or near the lead after opening with a 66 that put him ahead by one stroke after one round.
His best finish in three starts on the PGA Tour was a tie for 17th in the 2017 Puerto Rico Open, but he earned his European Tour card by finishing third at Euro Tour qualifying school after winning the 2018 PGM Darulaman Championship on the Asian Tour.
Campillo finished with a 69, while Sordet shot 70, Kieffer totaled 72 and Zanotti closed with a 74.
Thomas Pieters of Belgium carded a 70 to finish two shots back in a tie for sixth with Peter Hanson of Sweden and Joachim Hansen of Denmark, who both had 73s, while Ashley Chesters of England shot 69 and was one more back in a tie for ninth with Chris Paisley, also of England, who had a 72, and Scott Jamieson of Scotland, who came in at 75.
For complete results, visit http://www.europeantour.com/europeantour/season=2019/tournamentid=2019022/leaderboard/index.html#/leaderboard