Crocker Celebrates Maiden Pro Victory At Hero Open as Kearney Inches Up Race to Dubai Points Standings As

Bernie McGuire

Sean Crocker of United States poses with the Hero Open trophy after winning the Hero Open during Day Four of the Hero Open at Fairmont St Andrews on July 31, 2022 in St Andrews, Scotland. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

Niall Kearney has moved-up three spots on the Race to Dubai money list rankings after a top-22 finish at the Hero Open on the outskirts of St. Andrews in Scotland

Kearney is now ranked still a distant 262nd on the money-list standings after a no-frills closing round of 70 for a 12-under total on the Torrance course at the Fairmont Resort.

The Royal Dublin pro managed four birdies and half-as-many bogeys on day four of the Euro 1.75m event

Castleknock’s David Carey birdied three of his closing four holes in a three-under par 69 for a five-under total to finish just outside the leading 60, and in the process was rewarded with a DP World Tour prize cheque Euro 4,812.

And while Kearney heads south-west of Scotland to Wales for this week’s Tour venue at Celtic Manor, it’s back home for Carey after back-to-back historic tournaments for the 26-year-old in St. Andrews.

The spoils of the Hero Open went to American Sean Crocker who led from start-to-finish to celebrate capturing a maiden pro career title with his one-shot victory.

Crocker, who turns 29 in exactly a month, posted a gutsy final round four-under-par 68 and held on by a shot to win with a 22-under victory tally.

Crocker still led by a shot heading into the back nine ahead of three birdies in four holes from the 10th to reach 22-under par and stretch his advantage back to two.

But with Englishman Pepperell in the clubhouse on 21-under, Crocker endured a nervy finish as he parred his way home to sign for a closing 68 and win by a single shot.

Crocker, who started the 2022 season with eight missed cuts and a retirement in his first nine events, was thrilled to hole a 10-footer to save par at the par-3 17th and then visibly relieved as he holed his four-foot par putt at the last to secure the trophy.

“Winning a golf tournament is not easy, and Eddie did not make that easy for me either”, said a teary-eyed Crocker.

“After the three-putt par on the 15th I kind of thought I still had a little bit of room but they’re not easy holes coming down that stretch.

“It was a great par save on the 17th, and then I thought I could make it pretty easy – it’s a par five coming in – but I don’t think it’s ever easy to make a par to win a golf tournament. That was pretty special.

“I was nervous. I’ve felt pressure like that before but it’s my first pro tournament (win). That putt looked like it was 20 feet, that hole looked like it was half-an-inch wide.

“Right off the face I knew it was a well-struck putt and as I looked up and I saw it drop I was telling myself ‘don’t start crying’”.


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