Sam Locke wins Pollok play-off to land fourth Tartan Pro Tour triumph

Sam Locke landed his fourth Tartan Pro Tour title triumph in total but first under the circuit’s new 54-hole format after winning the Pollock Open presented by Blue Group in a play-off.
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The 24-year-old shook off the disappointment of finishing with a bogey at the Glasgow venue to beat Chris Curran and Jack McDonald in a sudden-death shoot-out.

McDonald dropped out after making a bogey at the first extra hole before Locke, having watched Curran miss an eight-footer as they then halved the 18th, secured the £4215 top prize with a close-range birdie at the third play-off hole.

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Locke, who was the leading amateur in the 2018 Open, won the inaugural event on Paul Lawrie’s circuit at Carnoustie in August 2020,

Sam Locke shows off the trophy after winning the Pollok Classic in a three-man play-off. Picture: Tartan Pro Tour.Sam Locke shows off the trophy after winning the Pollok Classic in a three-man play-off. Picture: Tartan Pro Tour.
Sam Locke shows off the trophy after winning the Pollok Classic in a three-man play-off. Picture: Tartan Pro Tour.

He also claimed victory at Kilmarnock (Barassie) in 2021 then became the first player to taste success on three occasions by winning at Dundonald Links just over a year ago.

“It obviously feels really good,” said Locke of his latest success. “Though we’ve not had many events yet, I don’t feel as though I ‘ve had my best stuff, so I’m delighted to get a win and hopefully this can kick-start my season.”

After opening two 68s, Locke trailed Curran by two shots heading into the final circuit, with McDonald sandwiched between the two of them.

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In a thrilling last-day battle, Locke made his move with birdies at the second, sixth, seventh, eighth, 13th, 15th and 16th.

Curran, who’d jumped into the lead with a second-round 66, birdied the third, seventh, eighth before giving one of those shots back the par-4 ninth.

He then birdied the 15th and 17th while McDonald, who topped the circuit’s Order of Merit last season, made gains at the second, fourth, seventh and 15th to keep him in the mix.

Locke had bogeyed the 18th in the second round and doing so again could have been costly, but it all worked out in the end for the Aberdonian.

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“Obviously it’s not nice bogeying the last, even though I had no idea how the scores were lying, but thankfully I got it done in the play-off,” added Locke, who is managed and mentored by Lawrie. “I think that shows good mental strength as It’s never easy to win at any level .”

Elsewhere, Scottish duo Hannah Darling (Broomieknowe) and Jasmine Mackintosh (Murcar Links) both suffered narrow last-32 defeats in the R&A Women’s Amateur Championship at Prince’s in Kent.

Two-time semi-finalist Darling was flattened by American Annabelle Pancake in a 2&1 defeat while Scottish Women’s Open champion Mackintosh lost on the last to Germany’s Chiara Holder.

Back in the pro ranks, a closing three-under 68 secured a top-five finish for Paul O’Hara behind runaway winner English Paul Hendriksen in the PGA Professional Championship at Sherwood Forest.

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In the junior game, in-form Summer Elliott is off and running in her bid to land a third straight success after carding a three-over 75 to lead by three shots in the Stephen Gallacher Foundation Vase at the Schloss Roxburghe.

The outstanding early round in the boys’ event at the Borders venue was produced by Aidan Lawson as the Bruntsfield Links player carded a one-under 71 that contained six birdies.

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