Willett secures maiden win after dramatic sudden death playoff in Germany

Danny Willett with the winning trophy from the BMW International Open in Cologne.

Story highlights

  • Danny Willett wins BMW International Open in Cologne after sudden death playoff
  • Maiden European Tour victory for 24-year-old Englishman
  • Brian Davis and Roland Thatcher hold lead after three rounds of Travelers Championship
  • Melissa Reid scores emotional win in Prague Masters on Ladies European Tour

England's Danny Willett recorded his maiden European Tour victory after a marathon sudden death playoff against Marcus Fraser of Australia at the BMW International Open in Cologne Sunday.

The 24-year-old Willett won at the fourth extra hole, taking advantage after Fraser missed a three foot putt for par.

Former Walker Cup star Willett, in his fourth year on the Tour, had 19 top-10 finishes in his professional career without clinching victory going into the tournament.

"It's amazing," he told the official European Tour website. "It was a tough day -- it was brutal with the wind whipping and it was raining.

"Marcus had a great round today and I hung in there nicely. Hopefully I gave people a good show."

Willett was as good as his word, but it needed a miraculous shot on the 18th to seal a playoff with Fraser, a two-time winner on the European Tour.

Fraser had set a clubhouse target of 11 under after a bogey of his own on the last. Willett needed a par to match him and after his drive ended behind a tree it looked unlikely.

    But he produced a sensational hooked iron shot to reach the green and two putts later forced extra holes.

    Willett missed a five-footer for victory on the first sudden death hole, but eventually was left to celebrate a breakthrough triumph.

    Tied for third, one shot adrift were Ireland's Paul McGinley, Spaniard Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano and England's Chris Wood.

    On the PGA Tour, England's Brian Davis and Roland Thatcher were leading the $6 million Travelers Championship going into Sunday's final round.

    Davis shot a six-under 64 to reach 12-under 198 after 54 holes, while Thatcher carded a 65.

    There was an emotional win on the Ladies European Tour as England's Melissa Reid won the Prague Masters Sunday, just a month after her mother Joy was killed in a car crash in Germany.

    Reid rolled home a six-footer on the final hole to hold off Italian Diana Luna, before breaking into tears and being comforted by fellow competitors and friends.

    "To be honest I wasn't that nervous. I think with something like what's happened to my family and me the last four weeks nothing really seems that difficult anymore," Reid told AFP.