Richard Bland claimed an emotional first European Tour victory in his 478th look after the 48-year-old from Southampton overcame Italy’s Guido Migliozzi in a play-off to win the Betfred British Masters at The Belfry.
In a dramatic closing day on the well-known Brabazon Course , Bland confirmed unimaginable bravery twice over to clinch the victory – first on the 72nd gap the place he holed a monster birdie putt to complete 13 underneath par courtesy of a closing 66.
Then, after Migliozzi had pressured a play-off due to a 68, Bland as soon as once more confirmed his mettle. Having discovered a difficult lie from his drive within the first play-off gap, the he pulled off a shocking 5-wood method to go away a makeable two-putt.
Migliozzi, 50 yards additional ahead on the green from his personal drive, proceeded to push his second shot to the best of the inexperienced. Bland rolled his birdie deftly to inside three ft, whereas his Italian counterpart raced his personal birdie putt previous the outlet on the center tier of the enduring inexperienced.
When Migliozzi missed his par putt, Bland knocked in for his 4 and for a career-defining triumph after quite a few near-misses down the years.
“It’s what I’ve labored for for 20 years,” stated Bland, who turned turned skilled in 1996, and whose solely earlier skilled win got here on the Problem Tour Grand Last in 2001. “I’ve had just a few shut calls, and I assume somebody up there was wanting down on me fairly favourably as we speak. It was simply my day.
“I saved telling myself on the final I assumed 13 underneath can be a actually good rating, particularly if the climate stayed how it was. To gap that putt on the final, I don’t assume I truly noticed it go in, however I knew it was good with a few foot to go. I feel I turned to the left to have a good time earlier than it had even gone in. I’d have regarded foolish if it’d missed!”
He added: “Lastly I can get off that record of the participant with the longest dropping run. One among my profession ambitions was to play 500 tour occasions, so this win will permit me to do this, which I’ll be vastly pleased with. To play 500 occasions out here’s a fairly good profession.
“Dropping my card a few years in the past was one among profession low factors. It took loads of guts to return to the Problem Tour at 46 years previous. You’re most likely sufficiently old to be a lot of the guys’ father. I bought my head down, I’m fairly good at that. After I put my thoughts to one thing I can simply go and do it, and that’s what I did.”
Event host Danny Willett capped off a vastly profitable week with a 70 and a share of eleventh, having additionally raised £19,000 for Prostate Most cancers UK – after title sponsors Betfred pledged to donate £1,000 to the charity for each birdie the previous Masters Champion made throughout the week.
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