CHRISTIAAN Bezuidenhout has won the Andalucia Masters, as Sergio Garcia failed to bag a consecutive triple.
The South African, 25, cruised to a six-shot victory in the tournament at Real Club Valderrama in Sotogrande to claim the €3 million prize.
He took a five-shot lead moving into the final round, before a couple of birdies saw his gap at the top extended to seven.
Spaniard Jon Rahm, 24, who was Bezuidenhout’s playing partner, cut the champion’s lead to just three, after he registered four bogeys.
However three birdies then put Bezuidenhout back in a strong position, to see him over the line for his first European Tour title.
“I’m proud of myself for hanging in there today after a tough stretch in the middle of my round,” he said after his victory.
Meanwhile, Sergio Garcia could not complete his title defence, finishing in seventh behind four other Spaniards.
Victory for the 39-year-old tournament favourite would have secured a consecutive trio of titles, after he won in 2017 and 2018.
The final standings were: -10 C Bezuidenhout (South Africa); -4 A Quiros, J Rahm, E De La Riva, A Arnaus (all Spain), M Lorenzo-Vera (France); -3 S Garcia (Spain).
The highest placing Brit was Andy Sullivan, who finished on one under par, while fellow Englishmen Jack Singh Brar and Steven Brown, and Scot, Scott Jamieson all finished on level par.