Ricardo Santos won the Ivobank PGA EuroPro Tour Oceanico Algarve Championship by one stroke from fellow Portuguese pro Antonio Sobrinho.
Holes 11 to 13 were the key for Santos (Oceanico Developments, pictured), picking up three birdies while playing partner Sobrinho (Vale Do Lobo) failed to register a birdie until the 14th. He picked another shot up at the 17th to move a shot behind Santos at 12 under but they both parred 18 to give Santos the win at 13 under (202) from Sobrinho (203).
The pair were tied at ten under overnight going into the final round, Santos picking up four birdies to Sobrinho’s two, with a dropped shot at the ninth. Both players recorded rounds of 66 and 67 in the opening two rounds on Wednesday and Thursday, played on the Millennium and Victoria courses of the Vilamoura resort.
“It’s a great feeling,” said Ricardo, who picks up €16,250 for his victory. “I was nervous going down 18 but it’s an amazing feeling now to have won.”
Santos is good friends with Sobrinho, who said that their round was played in a great spirit. “On the course we are serious but off the course we are great friends,” said Sobrinho, whose second place finish earned him €8,125. “I played great all week but just couldn’t catch Ricardo today.”
25 year-old Santos is ranked 51st on the Challenge Tour this year, while Sobrinho, 37, won EuroPro Tour events in 2003 and 2005.
Northern Ireland’s Richard Kilpatrick (Banbridge) finished in third spot at eight under for the tournament, posting 71 for the final round, with Barry Hume (Scotland), Noel Fox (Team Ireland – MMI) and Alan Murray (Greystones GC) tied in fourth spot at seven under. Hume looked the most likely to challenge the Portuguese leaders after blasting birdie, birdie, eagle at 10, 11 and 12 to storm into contention at nine under, but he was unable to capitalise further and dropped shots at 16 and 18. The trio pick up €3,000 apiece which cements Fox’s place at the top of the Order of Merit and Murray’s second spot behind his fellow countryman.
The Tour flies back to the UK and heads to Croydon in Surrey, where Selsdon Park is the venue on August 6.
FINAL RESULTS (first round comes first)
Ricardo Santos -13 (202) 66, 67, 69
Antonio Sobrinho -12 (203) 66, 67, 70
Richard Kilpatrick -8 (207) 65, 71, 71
Barry Hume -7 (208) 70, 68, 70
Noel Fox -7 (208) 66, 70, 72
Alan Murray -7 (208) 67, 68, 73
Jamie Harris -5 (210) 71, 70, 69
Harry Proos -5 (210) 73, 68, 69
Mark Laskey -5 (210) 66, 70, 74
Eight players tied in 10th spot at four under (211)
Date Posted: 25/07/08, 5.05pm