Ewen Ferguson admits 'pressure' got to him in Kenya Open disappointment
Ewen Ferguson admitted that a sleepless night thinking about holding a four-shot lead had contributed to the disappointing day that opened the door for Ashun Wu to create history by winning the Magical Kenya Open.
As Wu signed off with a 65 at Muthaiga Golf Club in Nairobi to triumph by four strokes with a 16-under total to become the first Chinese player to claim four DP World Tour titles, Ferguson was left licking his wounds.
Bidding to land a maiden win in just his 34th start on the main tour and only the third since becoming a full card holder, the 25-year-old Glaswegian looked calm and composed as he started with a solid par-4.
But, after flying the green with his tee shot at the short second then finding water with his tee shot with a risky driver at the third, he suddenly found himself on the back foot after playing brilliantly to spreadeagle the field with his 66 on Saturday.
He was still in the title hunt before running up two double-bogey 6s in the space of four holes on the back nine and, though too little, too late to deny Wu, at least a birdie to finish secured the Scot a spot in the top 10.
“I just found it really difficult to deal with today, the pressure and stuff,” admitted Ferguson after signing for a closing 76, which secured a share of eighth position on nine-under and a cheque for just under £30,000.
“I didn’t sleep much last night, just thinking about it. I couldn’t believe I was leading by four shots and, all of a sudden, I started thinking about some holes being hard after not thinking like that earlier in the week.
“But, you know what, there is nothing we can do. We move on, go again next week and try and get myself in the same position and hopefully deal with it a bit better.”
As he came off the last green, the former British and Scottish Boys’ champion was given a hug by compatriot Connor Syme, the pair not only being close friends but also both in Niall Horan’s Modest! Golf stable.
“I probably dealt with stuff wrong and just found it really hard. I just noticed everything going on around me. It was just hard work,” added Ferguson. “I also fell into some bad habits in my swing. With the pressure on, it just wasn’t there and was a real battle.
“I struggled, but, honestly, you can’t buy that experience. It’s really different, really hard and I know next time that I’ll be able to deal with it better, I think.”
Wu, who produced a telling thrust with a burst of four straight birdies around the turn then closing with another couple, has now won on three continents, having added to successes in Asia (Volvo China Open) and Europe (Lyoness Open).
Syme (72) finished on six-under, a shot ahead of David Drysdale (69), followed by Craig Howie (74) on three-under and David Law (69) and Scott Jamieson (76) both on two-under.
Elsewhere, Craig Ross, who’d also held the overnight lead, had to settle for a share of fourth spot behind Dane Oliver Hundeboll in the Challenge Tour’s Mangaung Open in Bloemfontein in South Africa.
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