TURIN, June 12, 2011 (AFP) - English veteran Robert Rock won his first European Tour title at the age of 34 on Sunday when he claimed a one-shot victory in the Italian Open.
Rock carded a final-round five-under-par 67 to finish on 21 under for the tournament, holding off a fighting challenge from Thorbjorn Olesen of Denmark, who went round in 62 after a spectacular outward 29.
England's Gary Boyd shared second place with Olesen on 20 under.
Rock, a nine-year Tour veteran with three runners-up places under his belt, had been two clear overnight, but endured a nervous start and bogeyed the third.
He then reeled off four consecutive birdies from the fifth, and two more at the tenth and 11th put him ahead of 21-year-old Olesen.
Rock wobbled again with a bogey at the 12th, reclaimed the shot at the 13th before parring the difficult 17th, recovering well after finding the trees with his drive.
"I have been waiting a long time to be even in with a chance of doing this," Rock told Sky Sports. "I played good today so I am very happy.
"It's a fantastic feeling, it's one of my favourite courses now. Since they changed the venue I have done well here. I was expecting to do well this week but not really expecting this."
Rock's next date is a debut appearance at the US Open in Maryland from Thursday.
Leading and selected Italian Open final round scores at the Royal Park club on Sunday (GBR and IRL unless stated, par 72):
267 - Robert Rock 64-68-68-67
268 - Gary Boyd 69-65-68-66, Thorbjorn Olesen (DEN) 65-71-70-62
269 - Peter Whiteford 68-67-68-66
270 - Joost Luiten (NED) 66-67-69-68
271 - Niclas Fasth (SWE) 69-69-64-69, Michael Jonzon (SWE) 69-68-69-65
272 - Francesco Molinari (ITA) 66-68-68-70, Jbe Kruger (RSA) 69-66-67-70, Matteo Manassero (ITA) 66-68-70-68
273 - Mark Tullo (CHI) 72-67-69-65, Gregory Bourdy (FRA) 66-68-69-70, George Coetzee (RSA) 70-70-67-66, Pablo Larrazabal (ESP) 67-70-65-71
274 - Anthony Wall 67-68-71-68, Richie Ramsay 67-69-69-69, Marco Ruiz (PAR) 72-67-67-68, David Dixon 70-69-66-69, Rhys Davies 66-68-69-71, Bernd Wiesberger (AUT) 70-70-67-67, Florian Fritsch (GER) 69-68-68-69, Fredrik Andersson Hed (SWE) 70-69-69-66
275 - Marcus Fraser (AUS) 71-66-69-69
276 - Jeev Milkha Singh (IND) 69-66-70-71
277 - Daniel Gaunt (AUS) 69-68-72-68
280 - Hennie Otto (RSA) 70-69-71-70, Darren Clarke 71-66-75-68
281 - Wade Ormsby (AUS) 71-69-70-71
282 - Brett Rumford (AUS) 69-66-77-70
284 - Scott Strange (AUS) 72-68-70-74
288 - Michiel Bothma (RSA) 69-71-74-74
WD: Thomas Bjorn