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Last Updated: Sunday, 10 October, 2004, 16:30 GMT 17:30 UK
Gallacher scales Dunhill
Stephen Gallacher
-19 *S Gallacher (Sco), G McDowell (NIre)
-18 I Poulter (Eng), L Donald (Eng)
-16 L Westwood (Eng), D Howell (Eng)
-14 E Els (SA), F Couples (US)

*Gallacher wins via play-off

Scotland's Stephen Gallacher clinched his first European Tour title with a play-off victory in the Dunhill Links Championship at St Andrews.

The 29-year-old nephew of former Ryder Cup captain Bernard Gallacher pipped Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell at the first extra hole.

The pair were tied on 19 under after the infamous 17th - the Road Hole - shuffled the pack late on.

In the team event, US pro Fred Couples and amateur Craig Heatley won by two.

Gallacher fired his second shot to within a few feet on the first play-off hole as McDowell, who equalled the course record of 62 on Friday, found the Swilcan Burn with his approach to effectively end the contest.

"I've been knocking on the door for so long and to do this at St Andrews is like a dream come true," said Gallacher, who now moves up to 12th in the European Order of Merit.

"It's not sunk in yet but it certainly takes a bit of weight off [the mind].

"Hopefully, now I can go out and win again. I'd like to get into the world championship events now, and the majors. That's what you play for."

Fred Couples
-37 C Heatley/Couples
-35 R Hissom/O'Hara, G Vialli/Canonica
-34 Sir M Arbib/Gallacher
-33 B Richards/Muntz

-30 SL Jackson/Howell
-29 R Underwood/Yates
-28 Sir S Redgrave/Senior, K Dev/Karlsson
-27 D Hopper/Poulter
-24 I Botham/Woosnam

Amateur names first

Gallacher turned pro in 1995 after a successful Walker Cup with GB&I at Royal Porthcawl but the closest he had previously come to winning was as a runner-up twice - in the Great North Open in 2001 and the Seville Open in April.

But he held off two-time winner McDowell and a quartet of English Ryder Cup players - Ian Poulter, Luke Donald, Lee Westwood and David Howell - to pick up the 460,000 first prize.

In regulation play, four of the top six on the leaderboard bogeyed the 17th, while Howell took a double-bogey six to slip out of contention.

Defending champion Westwood was the first to trip up en route to a 67 and 16 under before Gallacher did the same - after a 30 minute wait on the tee - in his 67, as did McDowell for his 68.

Poulter was the only one of the leaders to claim a par four and had a chance to chip in at the last to reach the play-off, but pushed it just inches right for a 69 and 18 under.

Overnight leader Donald, too, faced a 15-footer to get to 19 under but came up short to finish alongside Poulter, with Howell two back after a 71.

I am going to have a full week's rest now and try and sort it [wrist] out as it has been sore
Ian Poulter

European Order of Merit leader Ernie Els closed with a 70 for 14 under, the same score as former Masters champion Fred Couples.

World number one Vijay Singh also finished with a 70 for 11 under alongside US Open champion Retief Goosen, while European Ryder Cup hero Colin Montgomerie carded a final-round 71 to end on 10 under.

England's Brian Davis, who shares the St Andrews course record with McDowell and amateur Kevin McAlpine, fired 67 to end on 12 under alongside Australian Adam Scott and Ian Woosnam.

European Ryder Cup star Paul Casey ended on seven under, Ireland's Paul McGinley was five under and France's Thomas Levet four under.

In the team event, Couples and Heatley won by two shots from former footballer Gianluca Vialli and fellow Italian Emanuele Canonica and the pair of Robert Hissom and Scottish pro Steve O'Hara.

Interview: Dunhill winner Stephen Gallacher

Donald hits Dunhill summit
09 Oct 04  |  Golf
Howell seals one shot lead
08 Oct 04  |  Golf
McDowell tames Old Course
07 Oct 04  |  Golf

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