European Tour

Otto clinches Italian Open

2014-08-31 20:22
Hennie Otto (Getty Images)

Turin - Stephen Gallacher saw his hopes of automatic qualification for the European Ryder Cup team shattered on Sunday despite a superb closing 65 at the Italian Open in Turin.

The 39-year-old Scot needed to win or finish joint second with just one other player to dislodge Graeme McDowell from the ninth and last automatic qualifying place in Paul McGinley's 12-strong side for Gleneagles.

But despite giving it his best, he came up just short in third place behind South African winner Hennie Otto and England's David Howell who putted superbly for a nine under 63.

Still, Gallacher, the nephew of former European team player and skipper Bernard Gallacher, has hope of making the team as captain McGinley has three wildcard picks to make on Tuesday ahead of the September 26-28 showdown with the Americans.

In that aspect he will likely to come up against former world No 1s Lee Westwood and Luke Donald as well as the Ryder Cup hero of two years ago Ian Poulter all of whom failed to make the top nine.

"It was good. I enjoyed it. It's just a shame I didn't do well coming in," said Gallacher.

"The last two weeks were really pressure situations. It was a tall order, but I am proud of myself the way I played.

"There are are four or five other guys that are just as worthy of it (wildcard pick)."

Gallacher trailed leader Otto by six shots and second-placed Richie Ramsay by four at the start of the day, but raced to the turn in a superb 30 at Circolo Golf to massively improve his chances

At 16 under par, Gallacher was in outright second, two behind Otto and in pole position to grab automatic selection to compete at Gleneagles which takes place just 35 miles from where he lives.

It all came down to the final few holes with Gallacher duelling with Otto, the fast-charging Howell and compatriot Ramsay for the three podium places.

But while Gallacher parred his way in over the tough closing stretch, Howell sunk a pair of huge birdie putts and Otto scrambled to stay ahead despite some poor tee shots.

It was the second time that Otto had won the Italian Open after claiming the crown in 2008.

Afterwards McGinley, who missed the cut in the tournament, had words of encouragement for Gallacher, despite saying he had yet to finally make up his mind for the three wildcard picks.

"It was a tremendous performance by Stevie today but unfortunately he has come up one short of qualification," the Irishman said.

"His performance this week will certainly come into account when making the picks. But in the cold light of day I will sit down tomorrow with the vice-captains and assess everything."

FINAL SCORES

268 - Hennie Otto (South Africa) 67 62 71 68

270 - David Howell (Britain) 73 67 67 63

271 - Stephen Gallacher (Britain) 72 65 69 65

272 - Joost Luiten (Netherlands) 69 68 70 65, Richie Ramsay (Britain) 67 69 66 70

275 - Bernd Wiesberger (Austria) 66 66 71 72

276 - Ross Fisher (Britain) 69 66 70 71, Lee Slattery (Britain) 70 68 67 71, Andreas Harto (Denmark) 70 69 70 67, Simon Dyson (Britain) 71 68 69 68

277 - Andy Sullivan (Britain) 70 72 66 69, James Morrison (Britain) 70 66 72 69m Romain Wattel (France) 73 68 67 69

278 - Shiv Kapur (India) 73 69 68 68, Mikko Korhonen (Finland) 70 67 71 70, David Horsey (Britain) 71 69 72 66, Sam Walker (Britain) 70 72 68 68

279 - Alvaro Quiros (Spain) 70 72 68 69, Kristoffer Broberg (Sweden) 73 68 72 66, Carlos Del Moral (Spain) 70 68 70 71, Darren Clarke (Britain) 72 70 67 70, Francesco Molinari (Italy) 66 72 69 72, Darren Fichardt (South Africa) 68 69 71 71

280 - Morten Madsen (Denmark) 68 68 73 71, Francesco Laporta (Italy) 68 72 69 71, Ricardo Gonzalez (Argentina) 74 66 68 72, Richard Bland (Britain) 67 71 71 71, Robert Rock (Britain) 69 70 73 68, Kim Si-Hwan (South Korea) 70 72 69 69, S.S.P. Chowrasia (India) 69 72 66 73, Tom Lewis (Britain) 71 69 73 67, Estanislao Goya (Argentina) 71 70 69 70, Tommy Fleetwood (Britain) 72 70 67 71, David Lipsky (U.S.) 69 67 73 71

281 - Marcel Siem (Germany) 73 68 70 70, James Heath (Britain) 73 68 70 70, Merrick Bremner (South Africa) 71 68 70 72 , John Hahn (U.S.) 67 73 76 65, Peter Whiteford (Britain) 73 67 71 70, Fredrik Andersson Hed (Sweden) 74 67 70 70, Craig Lee (Britain) 70 72 68 71, Wade Ormsby (Australia) 74 68 70 69, David Drysdale (Britain) 73 69 71 68, Marc Warren (Britain) 69 70 69 73, Daan Huizing (Netherlands) 69 71 69 72

282 - Anthony Wall (Britain) 71 70 69 72, Adrien Saddier (France) 70 70 72 70, Felipe Aguilar (Chile) 68 69 76 69, Gareth Maybin (Britain) 67 73 74 68, Joachim Hansen (Denmark) 69 71 72 70, Oliver Fisher (Britain) 74 67 75 66, Benjamin Rusch (Switzerland) 73 66 75 68, Seve Benson (Britain) 70 67 72 73

283 - Soren Hansen (Denmark) 71 66 72 74, Jorge Campillo (Spain) 71 71 73 68, Matteo Manassero (Italy) 73 69 71 70, Thomas Pieters (Belgium) 70 68 79 66, Maximilian Kieffer (Germany) 68 70 76 69

284 - Alessandro Tadini (Italy) 72 69 72 71, Rafael Cabrera-Bello (Spain) 73 63 75 73, Edoardo Molinari (Italy) 71 69 71 73, Magnus Carlsson (Sweden) 72 70 72 70, Jason Knutzon (U.S.) 70 70 74 70

285 - Edoardo Lipparelli (Italy) 68 70 71 76

286 - Roope Kakko (Finland) 69 72 71 74, Damien McGrane (Ireland) 71 71 73 71

287 - Daniel Im (U.S.) 71 71 70 75, Alexander Levy (France) 73 68 68 78

288 - Filippo Bergamaschi (Italy) 72 69 72 75, Eduardo De La Riva (Spain) 72 70 73 73

290 - Garrick Porteous (Britain) 71 71 74 74, Ignacio Elvira (Spain) 75 67 72 76

292 - Gregory Molteni (Italy) 70 70 74 78

Read more on:    european tour  |  hennie otto  |  golf
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