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Gallacher proud despite agonising Ryder Cup near-miss

David Howell was the only player to shoot a better round of him on the last day.

Scotland's Stephen Gallacher just missed out on a Ryder Cup place today.
Scotland's Stephen Gallacher just missed out on a Ryder Cup place today.

STEPHEN GALLACHER EXPRESSED pride in his Italian Open performance despite missing out on an automatic Ryder Cup berth.

Gallacher needed to finish in the top two in Turin to be sure of a place in the Paul McGinley’s 12-man team for the iconic matchplay tournament with the United States, which starts at Gleneagles on September 26.

And the Scot came agonisingly close to sealing an immediate spot in the team as he finished third, one shot behind second-placed David Howell in spite of a seven-under par final round that took him to 17 under for the tournament.

Howell was the only player to shoot a better round of him on the last day, carding a nine-under 63 at the European Tour event.

But Gallacher, who could still be named as one of McGinley’s three wildcard picks on Tuesday, refused to get too downhearted over his misfortune.

“It was a tall order, but I’m proud of the way I played,” Gallacher said. “You can’t get any closer than that.

“It comes down to somebody else’s opinion [now]. There are four or five guys who are worthy of it, so it just comes down to what Paul sees.”

Gallacher is likely to face plenty of competition from the likes of Luke Donald, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter for a wildcard place.

And, although he was impressed with Gallacher’s display in Italy, McGinley insists the 39-year-old is far from certain to feature against the USA.

“It was a terrific performance by Stevie – all credit to him,” McGinley said. “He really tore the front nine apart.

“His performance this week will be very strongly in his favour when it comes to making the picks, but he’s not guaranteed a pick.

“There are other golfers to be looked at in the cold light of day.”

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