Stephen Gallacher’s top Scot after Portugal display

Stephen Gallagher. Picture: Stuart Franklin (Getty Images)
Stephen Gallagher. Picture: Stuart Franklin (Getty Images)
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LOTHIANS star Stephen Gallacher is Scotland’s top-ranked professional golfer.

The 38-year-old has climbed to 56th in the latest world rankings after finishing in a tie for third behind Englishman David Lynn in the Portugal Masters.

It’s Gallacher’s highest position in the global standings since he was 60th after winning the Dubai Desert Classic back in February. He’s now above 61st-ranked Martin Laird after already leapfrogging another of his compatriots, Paul Lawrie, earlier in the year.

Gallacher, who stormed home in 31 for a closing 66 in Portugal, is also on course for his best-ever season on the European Tour after climbing to 14th in the Race to Dubai. He has taken his 2013 earnings through the £1 million barrier and is the fourth top British player after Graeme McDowell, Justin Rose and David Howell.

Gallacher finished 15th on the money-list in 2004 – the year he recorded his breakthrough win in the Dunhill Links at St Andrews. But, with four big-money events to come in the new Final Series, he’s in with an excellent chance of improving on that effort.

His next two starts are in China – next week’s BMW Masters followed by the HSBC Champions event. The Linlithgow-based player then heads to Turkey before lining up in the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.

His target between now and the end of the year will be to climb into the world top 50 in the world rankings.

That would secure a first Masters invite next April as well as starts in the first two WGC events in 2014.

Meanwhile, Edinburgh ace Andrew Oldcorn is sitting sixth on the European Senior Tour Order of Merit. It follows him tying for 27th in the weather-hit Dutch Senior Open at The International in Amsterdam.