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Sunday, 5 May, 2002, 16:43 GMT 17:43 UK
Mackenzie holds on for maiden win
Malcolm Mackenzie
Mackenzie survived a nervous last four holes
  Final leaderboard

Sheffield's Malcolm Mackenzie won his first European Tour title at the 509th attempt in a tension-filled climax to the French Open.

  E-mail congratulations to Malcolm Mackenzie

Mackenzie, in his 20th consecutive full season on tour, carded a final-round 72 for a 14-under-par total.

He held on for a one-shot victory over South African Trevor Immelman.


My wife has wanted an extension for years and now it looks like she'll get one
Malcolm Mackenzie
But the 40-year-old needed to birdie the last hole to secure victory.

"It's taken 20 years to get here and I'm very, very happy," he said.

"I'm delighted for my family who have supported me through thick and thin, all my supporters, and I can say I have done it at last.

"I was struggling financially and was overdrawn at the bank before this week.

"I was confident I could get out of trouble but never dreamed of this. It's worth all the 20 years of hard work.

"The bank manager will be very happy and so will my wife, she has wanted an extension for years and now it looks like she'll get one."

Ryder Cup vice-captain Ian Woosnam eagled the 18th to claim a share of third place another shot back, alongside Denmark's Anders Hansen and Ashington's Kenneth Ferrie.

Trevor Immelman
Immelman was left to rue a missed putt on the 18th

The first prize of 205,795 was almost seven times Mackenzie's previous biggest cheque on tour.

His previous best was 30,071 for finishing fifth behind Nick Faldo at the Open Championship at Muirfield in 1992.

Mackenzie began the day with a one-shot lead but that was instantly wiped out as he bogeyed the first two holes to fall one shot behind defending champion Jose Maria Olazabal.

But the 40-year-old dug deep and stopped the rot with birdies at the third and fifth to get back into a share of the lead with Hansen, who had birdied the fifth and ninth.

A birdie of his own at the ninth then took Mackenzie back into the outright lead and when he birdied the 14th, he had a three-shot lead with only four holes to play.

However, his approach to the 15th found the water surrounding the green and he did well to hole a six-foot putt for bogey.

Three putts meant another bogey on the 16th and a poor second to the 17th made it three dropped shots in a row.

That left him tied with Immelman - who had birdied the 17th - standing on the 18th tee.

Up ahead Immelman's birdie putt on the 18th shaved the edge of the hole - but this time Mackenzie made no such mistake.

He fired a brave long iron shot into the heart of the green and safely two-putted for the vital birdie.



Final leaderboard from the French Open:

(Gbr & Irl unless stated)

274 Malcolm MacKenzie 68 69 65 72
275 Trevor Immelman (SA) 68 64 71 72
276 Kenneth Ferrie 68 72 67 69, Ian Woosnam 69 71 66 70, Anders Hansen (Denmark) 69 70 65 72
277 Andrew Coltart 71 66 71 69, Eduardo Romero (Arg) 70 66 71 70, Jose Maria Olazabal (Spa) 69 67 67 74
280 Gary Evans 71 67 67 75, Jean Francois Remesy (Fra) 67 69 69 75
281 Mark Davis 69 70 72 70, Klas Eriksson (Swe) 76 66 69 70, Nick O'Hern (Aus) 71 71 67 72, Ricardo Gonzalez (Arg) 71 68 69 73
282 Thomas Levet (Fra) 72 70 70 70, Soren Hansen (Den) 69 72 70 71, Soren Kjeldsen (Den) 72 69 70 71, Martin Olander (Swe) 67 71 72 72, Robert Karlsson (Swe) 69 71 70 72
283 Stuart Little 74 69 72 68, Christopher Hanell (Swe) 75 69 71 68, Gary Orr 72 69 68 74

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 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's Norman Dabell
"MacKenzie was nervous coming up to the 18th"
Malcolm Mackenzie
"It's only taken 21 years"
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