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BBC Sport's Norman Dabell
"The sudden death drama lifted the gloom at Celtic Manor"
 real 14k

Sunday, 12 August, 2001, 08:24 GMT 09:24 UK
McGinley wins wet Welsh shoot-out
Paul McGinley
McGinley: Dubliner is now eighth on the Ryder Cup list
Paul McGinley won a nerve-racking sudden death play-off after a rain-hit Wales Open.

The shortened event resulted in reduced prize money and fewer Ryder Cup points for the Irishman.

But he is still almost sure of his place at the Belfry next month after rising to eighth in the Cup standings.


There was a huge amount of pressure on me and I'm delighted it came off
  Paul McGinley

The Irishman's triumph came as the event was decided in historic fashion.

McGinley and Daren Lee contested the same par-three hole five times, the first time a play-off has been used after just 36 holes on the European Tour.

Paul Lawrie dropped out of the reckoning after two attempts at the same 208-yard 12th hole.

Officials at the Celtic Manor course, which hopes to host the 2009 Ryder Cup, decided on the bizarre end on Sunday morning.

They had cancelled the third round after a downpour on Saturday, and were hoping to complete a 54-hole tournament during Sunday.

More overnight rain left the course unplayable, although officials decided that the 12th could stand up to a repeated shoot-out.

Darren Lee
Lee wasted two opportunities to win

When it started, Lee held the initiative first time around after opening the play-off with the best shot of the day.

But he left his birdie putt for victory one roll short of the hole and the trio all made par.

McGinley then missed with a birdie effort as the triumvirate re-played the hole.

Lawrie dropped out at the second attempt as he fired a par putt beyond the hole.

Lee then lipped out a putt for victory on the third attempt, before the fourth was halved.

The tournament was finally decided at the fifth attempt.

Lee missed the green and McGinley saved par from the greenside bunker.

Unhappy Welshman

The decision to cut short the event was bad news for Welshman Phillip Price's Ryder Cup hopes.

The home favourite had been in with a chance of winning, lying only four shots off the lead after two rounds.

But Sunday's curtailment meant he had settle for a share of 14th place without enough points to protect his ninth spot in the table.

"I'm disappointed not to play but that's the way it goes," he said. "There's nothing you can do about the weather.

"It has not helped at all and I'm sure it's given Paul a huge boost. I think he has every chance of being in the team now.

"It is not good for me. I needed the points. I now need to have a good week in Atlanta in the USPGA Championship."

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06 Aug 01 |  Golf
Ryder Cup battle hots up
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