Halfway throught the final round of the 2023 Horizon Irish Open, the top of the leaderboard showed a four-way tie for the lead as Vincent Normann, Grant Forrest, Hurly Long and Ryan Fox were all at 13 under at The K Club in Kildare, Ireland.
Min Woo Lee and Jordan Smith were just a shot back, with Rory McIlroy, Shubhankar Sharma, Shane Lowry and Connor Syme all giving chase, two shots back.
The stage was set for a fantastic finish.
McIlroy, however, had a bad back nine. He was even through 10 before dunking his approach into a stream on the 11th hole, leading to a bogey. He birded the 13th but after trying to reach the par-5 16th in two, he hit another ball into the water, leading to a triple bogey on the hole. A day after posting 66, McIlroy closed with a birdie but shot a 74 and tied for 13th, his first finish outside the top 10 in any tournament since May.
Vincent Norrman, who won his first PGA Tour event in July, bogeyed the 13th hole in each of the first three rounds, but he made birdie there Sunday, one of seven birdies in a bogey-free, 7-under 65 final round.
Vincent Norrman plays his second shot on the 18th hole during the final round at the 2023 Horizon Irish Open at The K Club in Kildare, Ireland. (Photo: Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
Norrman closed with a short birdie on 18 and walked off the course tied for the lead at 14 under and then played the waiting game. About 90 minutes later, he was monitoring the closing moments of the tournament on his phone on the practice putting green, waiting to see if Long could eagle the par-5 closing hole to tie and force a playoff.
But Long could not drain the eagle putt, clinching the win for Norrman by a shot. In his 14th appearance on the DP World Tour, Norrman now has two wins. It’s the second week in a row a Swedish player has won on the DP World Tour.
Long nabbed solo second at 13 under. Forrest, Fox, Lowry and Thriston Lawrence tied for third at 12 under.
The DP World Tour’s BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth is next week.