Hanbyeol Kim confirmed his status as one of Korea’s rising young stars by winning the Shinhan Donghae Open at Bear’s Best Cheongna Golf Club, in Incheon, today – just two weeks after winning his maiden title.
Kim, who turned 24 years old last week, beat Canadian Richard T. Lee by two shots after firing a final round four-under-par 67 for a winning total of 14-under-par 270.
Lee, the 2017 Shinhan Donghae Open champion, closed with a 66. He mounted a brilliant challenge on the back nine, making birdies on six out of the first seven holes before dropping a shot on the last.
Koreans Joungwhan Park, Jeunghun Wang and Minchel Choi came in tied for third, three shots back of Kim, after posting rounds of 67, 68 and 68 respectively.
Overnight leader Kyongjun Moon battled to a 73 to settle five shots back in a tie for seventh.
Kim, who joined the play-for-pay ranks last year, lost in a play-off at the KPGA Open earlier in July before claiming his first professional title at the Hedges Golf KPGA Open two weeks ago. It is his first appearance at the storied Shinhan Donghae Open this week.
Starting the final round one shot back, Kim impressively rose to the challenge with a bogey-free round highlighted by two birdies on the front and two on the back.
By the time he reached the 18th he had a two-shot advantage over Lee – which was a lead he never looked like relinquishing.
“It is a special day. I would like to thank so many people for this, especially my parents. It is my second win and it is really incredible,” said Kim, who celebrated most birdies with a trademark fist pump and only dropped four shots all week.
“I was aiming for one win this season, so to get two is great. I have a chance to win the Money List now in Korea, which is incredible.”
Korean Seungyul Noh, looking for his first win since the 2014 Zurich Classic of New Orleans on the PGA Tour, carded a disappointing 74 to finish joint 22nd.
His famous compatriot, Y.E. Yang – winner of the 2009 US PGA Championship – fired a 68, to tie for 26th place.
Click here for final results of the 36th Shinhan Donghae Open.