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Irish golfer Simon Thornton dedicates triumph to late dad on Father's Day

The Newcastle, Co. Down pro was emotional upon clinching his maiden European Tour title.

Simon Thornton captured his maiden European Tour title.
Simon Thornton captured his maiden European Tour title.
Image: PA Wire.

COUNTY DOWN GOLFER Simon Thornton won his maiden European Tour title at St Omer and dedicated it to his father who passed away three years ago.

The 36-year-old defeated Tjaart Van der Walt of South Africa in a play-off after both men had finished level on 279 for the tournament.

“It’s so big for me,” said a tearful Thornton. “On Father’s Day too, he passed away three years ago and it still hurts, but they are happy tears today. This is dedicated to him.”

He added, “I didn’t play particularly well today in perfect conditions but I got up and down when I had to and holed good putts.

I didn’t put myself in position very well so I was scrambling but my short game held up. I’ve been working hard on my short game for a couple of years now so I’m delighted. I changed my putter and my putting technique last week too so it all came together this week.”

Van der Walt was disappointed not to have claimed a first European Tour victory having shared the overnight lead after every round of the week.

“It’s really disappointing to get so close and not finish it off,” said the 39-year-old.

© AFP, 2013

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