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Sunday, 08 August 2004
England’s Carl Mason claimed his seventh title in the space of a year on the European Seniors Tour when he defeated compatriot Jim Rhodes and Japan’s Seiji Ebihara in a sudden-death play-off at the De Vere PGA Seniors Championship.

Mason made a birdie three on the 18th at De Vere Carden Park to beat Ebihara on the second extra hole, after Rhodes had been eliminated the first time round.

“It’s wonderful, played some great golf, had a few bad shots but that is golf. Jim (Rhodes) and Seiji (Ebihara) played well,” said Mason.

Mason, who started the final round five off the lead, fired a final round four under par 68 for a four round total of 13 under par.

Rhodes, who missed a three foot birdie putt on the last to win in normal time, also shot a 68 while Ebihara, who won this event in 2002, came in with a 70.

Overnight leader Gery Watine from France finished a stroke further back after closing with 74 along with Italy’s Giuseppe Cali, who fired a 73.

Scotland’s Sam Torrance made a late run at the title and eagled the 14th to go to 11 under for the tournament but then bogeyed 16 and 17. He returned a 70 to finish four short of the play-off in joint seventh place.

Mason, aged 51, had lipped out for a birdie to win on the first play-off hole but when they returned to the 18th he sealed victory with a brilliant second shot to 12 feet. A par would have been sufficient as his Japanese opponent missed the green and failed to get up and down.

“It’s incredible to think I have now won seven times. I never would have dreamt it,” added Mason, who triumphed four times in 2003 and won in Tobago and Ireland this season.

It was heartbreak for Rhodes as he could have wrapped everything up on the 72nd hole.

“I am disappointed not to have won but I am not going get too upset about it. I played well,” said Rhodes, who won the Irvine Whitlock Jersey Seniors Classic earlier this year.

The Englishman had an awkward lie for his second shot on the first extra hole and hit his second into water.

Canadian Bill Hardwick claimed the Hardys Super Seniors Prize, for the leading player aged over 60. He carded a final round 69 to tie for 10th place.

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