Colsaerts snaps seven-year victory drought at French Open

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Nicolas Colsaerts broke a seven-year victory drought on Sunday in Paris, hanging on to win the French Open by one shot with a final-round 72.

The 36-year-old Belgian entered the day with a three-shot lead at Le Golf National and carded three birdies and an eagle, but he made things interesting down the stretch when he found the water and made double bogey on the par-4 15th hole.

However, the former Ryder Cup player bounced back and closed out the tournament with three straight pars to earn his third European Tour win, and first since the 2012 Volvo World Match Play Championship.

Emotional Colsaerts snaps drought on roller coaster Sunday in France

Full-field scores from the Open de France

“It’s very, very special – the French Open for me is very special, because I’m French-speaking,” said Colsaerts. “I’ve been coming here for I don’t know how many years, it’s been a long road. So many people have supported me over the years, that’s why I get so emotional. I went through up and downs for so many years now.

“We knew the last four holes are always pretty dramatic, I proved it with hitting it in the water on 15. I don’t know what happened on 17 … but it was a bit of a surprise when I got on to the green. I thought I was still going to be one behind.”

Colsaerts finished a shot ahead of Denmark’s Joachim B. Hansen and two ahead of South Africa’s George Coetzee. Two-time major champion Martin Kaymer finished in a group at 8 under, four strokes off the pace.