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Rory fades, Gallacher defends at Dubai Desert Classic

Final Round – European Tour – Omega Dubai Desert Classic – Emirates Golf Club – Dubai, United Arab Gallacher wins as 40-1 pickEmirates –

Stephen Gallacher went out in 39, but came home at the Emirates Golf Club in 33 to shoot 72 and win by a shot at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.

The 40-year-old Scot managed birdies at No. 16 and 17 to cap off a defense of his title at 16-under overall. It marked his third career European Tour triumph. Argentina’s Emiliano Grillo logged a runner-up effort, thanks to making eagle on the 72nd hole.

Gallacher was a 40-to-1 pick to start the week at Ladbrokes.com.

Beginning the final round two shots back of Gallacher, World No. 6 and overall betting favorite Rory McIlroy was supposed to close the deal. Rory shot 63 in the opening round – his lowest in three years.

But, in the end, McIlroy shot a closing 74 and fell to T-9 at 12-under and four back alongside Paul Casey.

Brooks Koepka, Robert Rock, Mikko Ilonen and Thorbjorn Olesen logged Top 5 efforts.

The stacked field failed to rise to the top on Sunday. Tiger Woods finished T-41, while Henrik Stenson ended up T-29 with a final-round 4-under-68.

The win could move Gallacher into the Top 40 in the world rankings come Monday. He entered the Omega Dubai Desert Classic at 67th in the Official World Golf Ranking.

Other Golf News:

  • Former Masters champion Bubba Watson (15-under) leads the PGA Tour’s Waste Management Phoenix Open heading into the final round. Kevin Stadler is two back. Watson is looking for his 5th career PGA Tour title. He has not won since capturing the Masters Tournament in 2012.
  • Mi Hyang Lee shot a course-record 63 in the final round of the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open to edge Lydia Ko by a shot and win the Ladies European Tour title.
  • Woods missed 11 putts from between three and four feet on the PGA Tour in 2013. That ranked him 158th on tour.  He needed 116 total putts for the week at the Dubai Desert Classic including 31 in the final round.
  • Grillo, who was ranked 268th in the world heading into the week, bounced his final approach at the 18th hole off a hospitality tent and onto the green. He made the eagle putt to finish solo second.