Ryan Fox falls agonisingly short at Irish Open

11 July, 2018, 20:00 | Author: Suzanne Horton
  • Erik Van Rooyen was in control of Irish Open 2018 entering the final round Sunday July 8

Russell Knox rolled in two unbelievable, near-identical putts on both the 72nd and first play-off hole to claim the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open.

The duo were locked together on 14 under after 72 holes, with the fourth Rolex Series event of the season producing unforgettable drama at Ballyliffin Golf Club.

Knox holed a 40-foot putt for birdie on the par-4 18th to touch off a tasty 66, which was one off the round of the day.

However, a second monstrous putt from Knox put the pressure back on Fox to hole out to get it to a second playoff hole.

Then in the play-off he had an nearly similar putt to extend the play-off but his effort lipped out and Russell Knox was able to celebrate a first Irish Open win.

Rory McIlroy believes his game showed signs of progress during the weekend at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, giving him confidence ahead of The Open.

On the winning putt in sudden death, he added: "I said to (caddie) James, "well, we've already made this putt". "These things happen. People hole putts to win tournaments". "This is a heck of a start but I feel I have more to go".


"I hit the shots I wanted to down the stretch, felt comfortable out there and it was close".

Spain's Jorge Campillo finished a shot outside the play-off after a brilliant final round of 65, with defending champion Jon Rahm another stroke back following a remarkable 66 which included a triple-bogey seven on the second and five birdies in the last six holes.

Not wanting to miss out, Knox hit a monster birdie to take a share of the four way lead.

"I mean, obviously, to make a putt like that, it's a dream come true, on the last hole to win", said Knox. I hit two great putts on 18 and one grazed the edge and one came back at me so I'm happy.

Fox's consolation was a tee-time into The Open and with Nuneaton's Andy Sullivan (69) and South African Zander Lombard (69) securing the other two Carnoustie places.

McIlroy struggled with his putting during the first two rounds but was pleased to see his fortunes improve of the greens on his way to a tied-28th finish.

Somehow, he sunk it again, roaring with delight, sending the crowd into raptures, and leaving Fox with a 12-footer to stay alive.

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