SYDNEY- Former OC Golfer Abraham Ancer went into the final round of the Australian Open with a five-stroke lead. With a few ups and downs along the way, he won it by the same margin.
The Mexican golfer, making his first trip to Australia, shot a final-round 69 Sunday to finish with a 16-under total of 272 at The Lakes.
Another major prize for Ancer's win is a trip to next year's British Open at Royal Portrush for finishing among the top three at the Australian Open who weren't already exempt.
His lead was reduced to four strokes a few times. But Ancer's shot of the day came on the fourth hole where he hit his pitch shot from just off the green well left of the flag, then watched it hit a slope and roll back down to finish in the hole for a birdie.
He thrust both arms up in the air in celebration.
"It's been crazy," Ancer said. "This win is all for my family. They've been there every single day of my life pushing me, or Mexican golf as well."
Australian Dimitrios Papadatos (67) also qualified for the British Open after finishing in second. Jake McLeod, who shot a 66 for the low round of the day Sunday, finished third to also qualify for the Northern Ireland tournament next year.
Matt Kuchar and Keegan Bradley finished well off the pace with final-round 75s after being among the leaders for three rounds.
Kuchar will head to Melbourne next week for the World Cup of Golf to partner Kyle Stanley for the Americans at Metropolitan Golf Club. Ancer will play on the Mexican team with Roberto Diaz.