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Darren Clarke rolls in the putts and rolls back the years to win on PGA Champions Tour

The 53-year-old Ulsterman won the Sanford International

Image: SIPA USA/PA Images

DARREN CLARKE REMINDED everyone of his class in Sioux Falls this evening when he won the Sanford International on the PGA Champions tour.

The Tyrone man’s final round of 65 saw him climb the leaderboard in stunning fashion. Starting four shots behind overnight leader, KJ Choi, Clarke opened his round with a bogey on the first. There was still little sign of what was to come in the closing seven holes even after he birdied the par 5 fourth and the par 3 sixth.

Clarke, however, is capable of hitting hot streaks and so it proved on the inward nine. Birdies on 12, 14 and 16 left him in with a shout of glory. He then had to birdie 18 to force a play-off and he managed to do so, leaving him with a five-under 65 for his round, in a play off with Choi and Steve Fleisch.

Clarke then won the tournament on the second play-off hole with a birdie 3 at the 18th.

He ranked first throughout the week for the number of birdies – 19 – that he posted and was also first for sand saves, longest drive and birdies per round. This is his third victory on the Champions tour.

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Garry Doyle

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