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Richie Ramsay on a high after Swiss Alps win

Scotland's Richie Ramsay claimed the biggest win of his career on Sunday at the European Masters in the Swiss Alps, a final-round 66 handing him victory by a four-shot margin.

Richie Ramsay on a high after Swiss Alps win
Photo: Omega European Masters

Ramsay finished at 16 under par, with Australia's Marcus Fraser, Romain Wattel of France, Fredrik Andersson Hed of Sweden and England's Danny Willett all on 12 under.

It is the second tour title of Ramsay's career after his triumph at the South African Open in 2010, and the second win in as many weeks for a
Scotsman, following Paul Lawrie's success at the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles last weekend.

"It was always going to be difficult because Paul is a fantastic player, but my plan was just to play the golf course and pretend I was playing with my
two best mates," Ramsay said after seeing off the challenge of fellow Aberdeen native Lawrie, who slipped back to joint-sixth after a 70.

"That was my plan all week and it worked. I managed to stay patient. A few deep breaths along the stretch and holing that final putt felt so, so good.
You can't buy that feeling."

A third-round 64 gave Ramsay the lead coming into the final round by a stroke from Lawrie, and he started superbly, going through the front nine in
just 31 strokes.

Victory appeared certain from the moment he went four shots clear thanks to birdies at three and four.

He dropped his first shot of the day at the 13th, but then produced a stunning eagle three at 14, and another bogey at 17 could not prevent him from claiming the title.

The 29-year-old is the first Scotsman to win in Crans-sur-Sierre since Colin Montgomerie back in 1996.

That was despite Fraser, Wattel and Andersson Hed also enjoying rounds of 66, although Willett, who had come into the day one shot adrift of the lead, needed to do better than a 69 to stay in contention for a second title of the season.

Another Englishman, Lee Slattery, shot the round of the day, his 64 featuring two eagles and taking him to eight under for the weekend.

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GOLF

Swede wins European Masters title at Crans

Sweden's Alex Noren beat Australia's Scott Hend at the first play-off hole to win the European Masters at Crans-sur-Sierre in Switzerland on Sunday.

Swede wins European Masters title at Crans
Alex Noren. Photo: Drew Hallowell/Getty Images North America/AFP

Noren had trailed Hend by a shot heading into the final round but a five-under-par 65 allowed him to finish level on 17 under with Hend, who had a 66.
   
The pair then had to go back up the 18th and Hend hit his tee-shot towards the trees on the left but saw his ball bounce back to the fairway and only just cleared the water with his second, as Noren put his second from the fairway to 30 feet.
   
The Australian chipped to eight feet but Noren holed his putt for the birdie and the win.
   
It is the second time the Swede has won the European Masters after a previous triumph in 2009, and his second win of the year following his Scottish Open victory in July.
   
“It was amazing. I've never won coming from behind. I've never won a play-off on the European Tour, so it feels even more amazing,” said Noren, who took some time off earlier in the year when his partner had a baby.
   
“It's fantastic. I never thought it would be this good of a year.”
   
Noren birdied the first and a run of four straight birdies from the sixth put him two shots clear at the turn, with Hend claiming birdies at the fifth and ninth.
   
However, Hend fought back on the homeward stretch to force the play-off, bogeying the 11th but then managing three birdies at the next four holes.
   
Noren was level on the back nine and a sudden death play-off awaited after Hend got up and down from the back of the green for par at the last while his Swedish opponent could not convert a long birdie attempt.
   
England's Andrew Johnston finished third at 14 under par, with Lee Westwood — a wildcard pick in the Europe team for the upcoming Ryder Cup — two shots further back in fourth after finishing with a 63.

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