Scotlands Eric Ramsay cruises to first Challenge Tour win in Poland at DHL Wroclaw Open

By: samjack

Eric Ramsay clinched his maiden Challenge Tour title in comfortable fashion after closing with a round of 69 to complete a wire-to-wire victory in the DHL Wroclaw Open.

The Scot, who became the 12th first-time winner on this season’s Challenge Tour, pocketed a cheque for €22,400 after finishing on 17 under par, two shots clear of his nearest rivals, the English duo of Andrew Butterfield and Richard McEvoy, who closed with respective rounds of 67 and 65.

Ramsay posted an astonishing 23 birdies over the four days at Toya Golf and Country Club in Wroclaw, Poland, and his 263 aggregate score was the lowest 72 hole total of the 2009 Challenge Tour season.

The 30 year old, who had led the €140,000 event since opening with a round of 61, carried a four-stroke advantage into the final day, and swiftly extended it with birdies at the second and third holes.
He picked up another shot at the 13th hole and, despite bogeys at the 15th and the last, the victory – which saw him climb 48 places to 22nd in the Rankings – was never seriously in doubt.

Ramsay said: “Obviously I’m very happy, even though I didn’t play that well today, particularly at the last. So I limped over the line a little bit, but it’s just such a relief to have got my first win. I got off to a good start with the early birdies, which gave me a nice cushion to play with. After that I was just trying to hit the middle of the greens, and I gave myself a few chances but just didn’t take them.

“There were quite a few leaderboards out on the course, so I knew I was two ahead coming down the last. I pulled my approach shot into the bunker and had a bit of a plugged lie, so I had visions of not coming out or going through the back of the green, which would’ve been so embarrassing. But thankfully I managed to get the job done.

“It’s obviously given me a big boost to my position in the Rankings, because before this week I was starting to worry about keeping my card on the Challenge Tour. But now I can start thinking about hopefully finishing in the top 20 and earning my card for The European Tour. I’m taking next week off, then playing in Holland and Kazakhstan, which is obviously the big one. It’ll be good to go there with my confidence high.”

Ramsay’s playing partner Butterfield, who closed the gap on Rankings leader Edoardo Molinari to €21, 652, birdied the last hole to draw level with his compatriot McEvoy, whose cheque for €12,600 moved him up to fourth in the Rankings at the expense of his injured compatriot Robert Coles.

Sweden’s Oscar Floren, American Nathan Smith and England’s Steven Tiley all finished two shots back in a tie for fourth place on 13 under par.

Floren’s round of 64 was the lowest of the day, whilst Tiley’s 68 ensured him a place in the lucrative Kazakhstan Open, as he moved from 196th in the Rankings to inside the top 100.

Sweden’s Andreas Högberg was also in jubilant mood after his ace at the 14th hole, the third of the tournament.

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