Jonathan Caldwell fell one shot shy of forcing a playoff as he had to settle for a share of fourth spot at the EuroPro Tour’s Matchroom Sport Championship at Harleyford Golf Club.
Needing a birdie at the last having picked up a crucial gain at the par-5 17th, the Clandeboye professional could only manage par as he signed off with a valiant three-under par 69 on the final day.
Caldwell had bolted into the lead after going four-under for his first six holes today but was unable to maintain that pace, dropping shots at 7 and 9 to make the turn in 34.
He picked up another birdie at 11 with his tournament hopes still very much alive, however a bogey at 14 proved costly as Caldwell fell one shot short of the 13-under mark that saw three people advance to a playoff.
Naas professional, Conor O’Rourke was the big mover from an Irish perspective on the final day as he fired a superb five-under par 67 to catapult up the board.
The 26-year old carded a magnificent seven birdies, needing just 32 shots on his inward half to bag a share of 17th at minus-nine.
Headfort’s Brian Casey concluded a fine week with his best round of it; a four-under par 68 that saw him move to a tie for 20th position at eight-under par.
The Royal Dublin’s Niall Kearney was another to enjoy a rousing finish after returning a bogey-free three-under par 69.
Kearney was left to rue a frustrating day one 75 that all but ended his tournament bid but he can take plenty of encouragement with his seven-under par tally that saw him finish in a tie for 27th at the 54-hole event.
Whitehead’s John Ross Galbraith signed off on his week with an even par 72 to sneak a top-50 finish at minus-three.
At the head of affairs, David Dixon clinched the title after coming out on top of a three-man playoff on the 18th hole.
With the leaders chopping and changing throughout the day it ended up being a straight three-way shootout between Seve Benson, Wentworth Club, David Dixon of Enmore Park Golf Club, and Dave Coupland of Woodhall Spa Golf Club.
All three ended their final rounds thirteen under leading to the play-off where on the 18th hole it was Dixon who reigned victorious in his first event back on the PGA EuroPro Tour since 2017.
An unblemished final round of three birdies and an eagle on the fifth put him in the position for the play-off. When it came to the play-off, Dixon birdied the par-4 18th to win with Coupland and Benson only able to par their finish. It was a consistent week for him overall with rounds of 70, 66 and 67.
Highlights of The Matchroom Sport Championship will air on Sky Sports on 11, June 2019.
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