England's Chris Hanson wins play-off at NI EuroPro Open

Chris Hanson
Chris Hanson putts during Friday's final round at Galgorm Castle

England's Chris Hanson edged out compatriot Graeme Clark in a play-off at the Northern Ireland EuroPro Open after both men finished on 14 under.

Three behind overnight, Hanson shot a superb seven-under 65 to post the clubhouse lead at Galgorm Castle.

Clark birdied the last to force the play-off as he signed for a 66.

Overnight leader Ross Cameron fell away with a 75 while Cork's Steven Hackett moved up to third with a 67 while Derryman Michael McGeady shared fourth.

McGeady shot a closing 67 which left him on eight under with another Corkman Michael Collins and Wentworth's Billy Fowles.

Rosapenna's Ruaidhri McGee joined Clark, Fowles and Alex Belt in shooting a final-round 66 which left the Donegal-based player in a group sharing seventh which included Ireland's John Kelly and overnight leader Cameron.

Brendan McCarroll finished on six under after a 72 while Barrie Trainor's hopes of a high finish evaporated as he fired a closing 74 for four under.

Damien Mooney finished 11 off the pace after a 73 while Mourne amateur Reeve Whitson closed in disappointing fashion with a 78.

Clark won last week's event at Longhirst Hall while Hanson had triumphed in the previous event at Bovey Castle for his first EuroPro win since 2006.

Hanson's victory moves him to the top of the order of merit with almost £22,000 banked and he is already on the verge of clinching a place on next year's Challenge Tour.

"I'm just over the moon and financially this relieves the pressure and I can just play and enjoy it for the rest of the year," said Hanson.

Clark led the money list going into the Galgorm event but while he drops to second place, he is also well on the way to securing a Challenge Tour card.

"Chris is in great form and played really well but if I keep playing the way I am then I can go out and win again," said Clark.

"The buzz around the venue was incredible and it was just like being on a Tour event.

"I've never seen so many people watching one of these events and it was unbelievable how many people were there but it's good for us to play in these situations."

Cameron bogeyed the opening hole and his hopes of victory were finally extinguished as a bogey on 13 was followed by two more dropped shots at the 14th.

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