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RSM Classic: Graeme McDowell finishes oh so close to glory in double bid

By Pat Smith

Graeme McDowell had to settle for third place after a brave bid for back-to-back titles in the RSM Classic at Georgia's Sea Island, American Kevin Kisner taking the victory.

McDowell - who won the OHL Classic in Mexico last weekend - performed admirably with his bogey at the 16th, after his approach was plugged in a bunker, his first dropped shot in 46 holes.

The Ulstermen was involved in controversy on Saturday when handed a one-shot penalty at the first after picking up his ball when wrongly assuming that the clean and place rule was operating.

"I was thinking, 'Oh my goodness, you absolute idiot'," said the 36-year-old.

Read more: DP World Tour Championship: Rory McIlroy's best shot seals No1 spot  

Kisner secured his first PGA Tour title after several near misses with a six-stroke victory.

Kisner, who picked up over £675,000 for his triumph, said: "I knew one day it was going to happen for me and it did on the front nine when I holed all those putts and I was able to kind of coast in on the back nine."

The 31-year-old from South Carolina never looked in danger of relinquishing his overnight three-shot advantage over fellow American Kevin Chappell and a second successive round of 64 saw him finish on 22 under par.

Kisner set a new tournament record score of 260, with McDowell finishing in third place on 15 under, just one shot behind Chappell.

McDowell started yesterday's final round four strokes adrift, but could not reel in Kisner who hit five birdies on the opening nine holes to strengthen his position at the top of the leaderboard as he went on to finish well clear of the field.

Chappell had to settle, like McDowell, for a 67. But it was yet another encouraging display by the Portrush native.

Belfast Telegraph


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