• Kyodo


Azuma Yano edged Taichi Teshima, Nozomi Kawahara and Fiji’s Dinesh Chand by a stroke to claim his first Japan tour title at the Asahi Ryokuken Yomiuri Memorial Open on Sunday.

The 28-year-old Yano made three consecutive birdies from the 15th to 17th among his five birdies in a bogey-free final round for a winning total of 18-under-par 270 at Iizuka Golf Club in Fukuoka Prefecture.

Yano, who started the final round one stroke behind overnight co-leaders Kawahara (69), Satoru Hirota (73) and Shingo Katayama, picked up his first birdie of the day at the 10th and had another at the 12th before making a late charge.

Money rankings leader Katayama shot a final-round 70 to finish alone in fifth at 16-under, followed by Tetsuji Hiratsuka (67) two strokes back.

“Things like this just happen. I wasn’t playing poorly and I tried hard,” said Katayama.

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