Jon Rahm, a living legend of Spanish golf, delighted local fans at the 94th ACCIONA Open de España presented by Madrid with a stunning performance the likes of which is only within reach of the greats.
The man from Barrika was back for his yearly visit to Club de Campo Villa de Madrid and he had a point to prove. A tough Saturday in the 2021 edition left him out of contention and, given the high standards the Basque player sets for himself, he was clearly not going to allow that to happen again.
In 2023, it was a very different story. Rahmbo played like the best player in the world from the first tee on Thursday. Seven shots under par in round one made it clear that the Spaniard only had one thing in mind; winning for the third time and equalling the number of victories claimed by his idol Severiano Ballesteros. No sooner said than done.
In the company of the tournament’s surprise package, Min Woo Lee, on all four days, the Basque golfer destroyed the field with an astonishing performance, eventually signing for a CCVM course record for 72 holes. 25 under par, a stratospheric figure and one that may not be beaten for many years to come.
Four dream days in which he holed 26 birdies, 2 eagles, and delighted the over 40,000 spectators who had come to watch him at Club de Campo Villa de Madrid. While on Thursday he laid the foundations for his win, on Friday he had to scramble in order to save one of those rare rounds in which he did not strike the ball as well as he is used to doing. He saved the fireworks for the weekend. 15 under across Saturday and Sunday with a final round that has already gone down in the history of Spanish golf. 8 birdies, an eagle, and centimetres away from his first albatross as a professional. It was a resounding demonstration of how lucky Spanish golf is to call one of the world’s great players their own.
The ’Viva Seve’ a spectator shouted just before Jon holed the winning putt, allowing him to tie the legend from Pedreña’s Open de España title haul, was the perfect conclusion to a dream tournament. The Barrika Lion comes into this year’s event with one thing on his mind, surpassing Ballesteros by claiming his fourth Open de España. He will be very much in the limelight, and the pressure will be piled on his shoulders, but does anyone dare doubt that the Spaniard is up to the task?