Thongchai Jaidee's agonising miss lets in Kristoffer Broberg at BMW Masters
Thai veteran fails to hang on to his overnight lead as Swede wins Shanghai event in play-off with Patrick Reed
Overnight leader Thongchai Jaidee fell three inches from a play-off in the BMW Masters on Sunday but the veteran still called it a "fantastic week" as Swede Kristoffer Broberg won his biggest pay cheque in the Shanghai event.
He left a 15-foot putt on the final green agonisingly short when a couple of more rolls would have taken him into a sudden death finale against Patrick Reed and Broberg in the US$7 million tournament.
The 46-year-old from Thailand was chasing his eighth European Tour title, and second of the season, when he teed off for his final round at Lake Malaren in the lead at 15 under par.
His strength all week - finding fairways and rock solid putting - let him down early in the final round as his worst round of the tournament, a one-under 71, left him in a four-way tie for third at 16 under par.
"Yes I was struggling with putting on the front nine. And the last putt was just a bit short to get into the play-off," Thongchai said.
"For me, I think very good week anyway. My week is fantastic week. If I don't win then it's because a lot of guys played well," added the Thai.
Broberg sank a knee-knocking downhill 12-foot birdie putt at the first play-off hole for victory.
The Swede carded a four-under final round of 68 to finish level on 17-under par 271 with American Reed who shot a 67, forcing the pair to go head-to-head back down the 18th at Lake Malaren.
Reed found the greenside bunker with his second to the long par four while Broberg carved a nine-iron perfectly to the right of the flag and saw it run down a slope to four paces from the hole.
Although Reed splashed out close, the stage was set for the 29-year-old from Stockholm who had won three times on the second-tier Challenge Tour but never among the top pros.
He had been faced with an almost identical putt minutes earlier on 18 to win outright but left it short. This time he made no mistake, firmly rolling the ball down the slope and into the heart of the cup to roars from the packed galleries as he held both arms aloft in triumph.
Broberg was embraced by his caddie and soon after by fellow Swedish tour players Rikard Karlberg and Henrik Stenson who showered him in celebratory champagne.
Fighting back tears, Broberg was almost lost for words after picking up the biggest payday of his career - US$1.66 million - and shooting up the Race to Dubai rankings from 61st to 12th.
"It's a dream come true. I've worked so hard all my life for this. I have no words," said the tearful Swede, who started the week ranked 149th in the world but looks certain break the top 100 when the new rankings are released today.
"I hit a good swing with my driver, just hit a long one left side," he said of the play-off hole. "Hit a pure nine-iron into the green and made the putt."
He said he would be celebrating later over dinner with his Swedish colleagues on tour including world number seven Stenson, who finished just one shot behind Broberg in a tie for third with An Byeong-hun of South Korea, Denmark's Lucas Bjerregaard and overnight leader Thongchai.
"Henrik paid the bill yesterday, so it's my turn today," Broberg said.
Play was halted briefly during the final round to observe a moment of silence for the victims of Friday's terrorist attacks in Paris.
At noon, tournament officials blew the horns on the course, normally used to halt play due to inclement weather, and all the players took off their hats and bowed their heads for a minute of silence. Many also wore black ribbons on their caps.
Additional reporting by Associated Press