Golfer Hanson overcomes child trauma to win Dutch event

Peter Hanson celebrates after holing his eagle putt on the 18th hole during the final round of the KLM Open on Sunday.

Story highlights

  • Peter Hanson wins European Tour event despite concerns about the health of his son
  • The one-year-old was being treated in a Florida hospital for a potentially dangerous virus
  • Hanson holes a long eagle putt at the final hole to win Dutch event by two shots
  • It was the Ryder Cup player's first victory this year and his fifth on the European Tour

With his baby boy dangerously ill and several hours' flight away, Peter Hanson was not in the best frame of mind to be playing a golf tournament.

Should he go back to the U.S. or stay in Europe and take the risk of further complications for one-year-old Tim, who was being treated for a respiratory virus at the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children in Orlando, Florida?

Assured by his wife that there was nothing he could do to help, the Swede remained in the Netherlands and pulled off an emotional victory with a sensational shot at the final hole of the KLM Open on Sunday.

"When he was put into hospital on Friday, I was panicking. He was not good for 12 to 14 hours there and as a parent that makes you feel very vulnerable," the 34-year-old told the European Tour website.

"I just wanted to go back home and look after the family, but my wife convinced me to stay. They were in good hands; there was nothing I could do and she was telling me that, but when your kids get sick you don't think straight."

However, he held it together enough to sink a huge eagle putt on the final hole to win his fifth European Tour title by two shots from Spain's Pablo Larrazabal and Scotland's Richie Ramsay at the Hilversumsche course.

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"It's always a nice feeling, but especially this week with how things have been with my son being a little bit ill," said Hanson, who will play for Europe against the U.S. at the Ryder Cup this month.

"He has managed to get over that and he's getting better and better, which is the most important thing."

Hanson, who also has membership of the PGA Tour this season, had looked like missing out when, trailing Larrazabal by one shot, he drove into the trees at the 16th hole.

"I had a little gap between the two trees and I needed to hit it through that with a bit of draw. Sometimes you have to take a chance and a risk and luckily it was my day," said Hanson, who pocketed the $380,000 first prize to be eighth in the Race To Dubai standings.

"When we get a chance to lift these trophies, something just clicks in your head. I was just trying to stay focused.

"This was needed. It's been a bit of a slow summer for me, so this came at a perfect time to get confidence back and feel ready for the Ryder Cup."

Ramsay birdied three of the last four holes to match Hanson's final-round score of 67, but was just short of repeating his victory at last week's European Masters in Switzerland.

"On the last hole I was thinking I could hole my eagle putt and have a little run around the green but he got in first," he said after taking home $200,000 to go 17th in the money list with almost $1.2 million this season.

"It didn't happen for me this week but I'm proud that I gave it a go. The last three weeks have been great. Sixth, a victory and second. It's nice to see hard work paying off."