Phillip Price (European Tour)
Welshman Phillip Price overturned a three-shot deficit on the final day to win his first European Senior Tour title at the WINSTONgolf Senior Open.
Price, a member of Europe’s victorious 2002 Ryder Cup side, started the day three strokes behind American Clark Dennis, but raced into the lead after making five birdies over the first six holes.
Bogeys on the 11th and 13th holes were cancelled out by gains on the 12th and 15th , and Price needed to par the last to secure his first over-50s title by one shot after Thailand’s Thaworn Wiratchant equalled the course record on the links course at WINSTONgolf to finish on 13 under par.
On the 18th, Price missed the green with his second shot but expertly pitched on, leaving six feet and two putts for a 14 under total score and a maiden Senior Tour victory.
“I played nice early on and managed to hang on at the end,” said the 50 year old. “Clark was three ahead but I got off to a flier and I was four under after four holes. I knew I needed to do something because he was three ahead and he could have gone off into the distance.
“It was a little awkward going down the back nine because I three-putted on the 13th. But I knew I had two birdie chances coming in; I saw Wiratchant parred the last, so that made things a little easier.
“I’m a little light on Senior titles, so it’s nice to get one under my belt now.”
A three-time European Tour winner, Price had previously finished second, tied fourth and tied eighth in regular Senior Tour events.
Price’s next appearance will be at the Senior Open Championship Presented by Rolex on home turf at Royal Porthcawl Golf Club from July 27-30, and the Welshman believes he is well prepared heading into the final Senior Major Championship of the season.
“This course is ideal preparation," he said. "My game is in good order, we’re playing at a local course, I’ll be staying at home and there will be home support. I can really take some confidence into that week.”
Wiratchant, playing in just his second European Senior Tour event, carded a bogey-free 64 as he finished one stroke ahead of Greg Turner, who finished on 12 under after a final round of 68.
The South African pair of Chris Williams and James Kingston finished fourth and fifth respectively on 11 and 10 under par, with Dennis joining Kingston in a share of fifth.