Ballantine's Championship: Brett Rumford wins with eagle at first extra hole

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Ballantine's Championship: Brett Rumford wins with eagle at first extra hole

Post by Devastating on Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:50 pm

Brett Rumford produced a dramatic eagle to win a three-man play-off against Marcus Fraser and Peter Whiteford at the Ballantine's Championship.

The trio had all tied on 11-under but at the first extra hole, the 18th, Aussie Rumford hit a towering iron to just under five feet and stroked in the putt to secure his fourth European Tour title and first since 2007.

Rumford was relieved to get a second bite of the cherry after blowing up in regulation time at the par 72 Blackstone Golf Club.

The 35-year-old had raced to the turn in just 30 strokes in the final round and still led by two shots with two holes to play, only to run up a double-bogey six on the 17th after a wild drive led to a penalty drop from a bush.

Another errant tee-shot on the 18th meant he eventually had to hole from eight feet to save par, and when compatriot Marcus Fraser was also unable to birdie the 543-yard par-five, it left the door open for Whiteford.

The 32-year-old from Kirkcaldy chipped to five feet after missing the green with his approach, but missed the birdie putt that would have given him a first European Tour title.

Rumford and Aussie compatriot Fraser, the winner of this event in 2010, had compiled final round four-under 68s to reach the play-off number of 11-under while Whiteford's 69 had started with a back nine 33 before he struggled to find birdies coming home.

Whiteford did manage a birdie at the first play-off hole after getting up down and Fraser was also about to tap in for one of his own but both were trumped by Rumford's eagle.

Overnight leader Alex Noren suffered a penalty shot at the second when his ball moved a fraction as he addressed his par putt, while he also double-bogeyed the 10th and 13th to drop out of contention.

The Swede eventually finished tied sixth.

Frenchman Romain Wattel shot a 69 to finish alone in fourth - two shots out of the three-man play-off - while pre-tournament favourite Louis Oosthuizen birdied the last to finish in solo fifth.

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