DUBAI: Stephen Gallacher equalled Thomas Bjorn four-day course record as he won the Omega Dubai Desert Classic at the Emirates Golf Club on a sunny Sunday.
Gallacher got his fifth eagle of the week on the par-4 16th carding an under-22 to equal Bjorn’s record set in 2001. The Scot finally broke free from his challenger Richard Sterne (three shots behind) in the last three.
Promising star Thorbjorn Olesen of Denmark and Felipe Aguilar of Chile were tied third followed by another pair – Lee Westwood of England and Marcus Fraser of Australia on 16 under.
Gallacher got his second European Tour victory after nine years in his 404th Tour event. He last won the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in 2004.
Sheikh Majid Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, chairman of the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, presented the trophy to Gallacher on the 18th green in the presence of Dr Ahmed Al Sharif, general secretary of Dubai Sports Council and Mohammed Buamaim, vice-chairman of golf in Dubai. Gallacher also became the second Scot to win the Desert Classic after Colin Montgomerie who won in 1996.
“I’ve holed four shots this week but then again you have to do that these days to win,” Gallacher said. “The scoring is so low and the players are so good that you need that little bit of magic.” The victory on Sunday made Gallacher richer by $416,600 (309,232 euros) and will also propel him into the top 60 of the Official World Golf Ranking from 111th.
The Scot has a double celebration lined up as his caddie Damien Moore celebrated his 42nd birthday.