Coupland clinches play-off victory


1208Europro Dave Coupland

Dave Coupland beat Sebastian Garcia Grout in a play-off to win the Scottish Classic on Friday, his maiden victory on the PGA Europro Tour.

Both finished the week 11 under par to force the play-off on the 18th. When Garcia made bogey Coupland had a short putt for par, and he sunk it to claim the £10,000 winner’s cheque and a brand new Motocaddy Trolley.

Coupland (Sharp Sports Golf Management) had shot rounds of 69 and 64 on the par-70 Earl of Mar Golf Course prior to Friday’s final round and finished with a four-under 66 to earn his place in the play-off.

He began confidently with birdies on the first and third and followed a bogey at four with eight consecutive pars. It was then that he made his move up the leaderboard, with three straight birdies on the 13th, 14th and 15th to take his round four under the card and his tournament score to 11 under.

“It’s unbelievable, I am speechless,” said Coupland on collecting his £10,000 prize. “I was level headed, tried to keep calm and was trying to remind myself I have done it before.

“I kept telling myself to stay calm and play my own game, and try and avoid worrying about the outcome. I hit the ball solidly this week.

“At the start of the week I tweaked something in my setup and I struck the ball a lot better so it was down to my setup really. I will celebrate with friends and family.”

The win sees Coupland creep into the top five on the Order of Merit, earning himself an invite to the Northern Ireland Challenge on the Challenge Tour.

Garcia (Golf de Poniente Mallorca) opened with a 65 on Wednesday, had a 67 on Thursday and matched his second-round score on Friday to conclude 11 under. He had led the tournament at one point after four front-nine birdies, including three consecutively from the first. However, he dropped back with bogeys on the 10th and 11th, with a birdie at 15 earning him a place in the play-off.

Coupland and Garcia would have been joined on the extra hole by James Maw (Abbeydale Golf Club) had he not bogeyed the last to end ten under, one over for the day.

Maw finished tied third on ten under alongside Shaun McAllister (Craigielaw Golf Club), who was left to rue a two-stroke penalty on the seventh. The Scottish golfer removed a leaf from a bunker before playing his shot, turning a birdie into a bogey once the penalty had been added.

Graham Cox (Davenport GC) finished fifth on eight under after a final-round 69, one under par.

A two-hour highlights package will air on Sky Sports HD on Tuesday, August 20, repeated four times the following day. The next event on the 888poker.comPGA EuroPro Tour is the Sweetspot Classic at Longhirst Hall Golf Club, beginning next Wednesday August 14 and concluding on Friday, August 16.

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