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Colin Montgomerie wins Macau Open title

Europe’s Ryder Cup star Colin Montgomerie won his first title in 2003 when he defeated unknown Australian Scott Barr in a play off to win the 250,000 dollar Macau Open, here yesterday.

Montgomerie, one shot behind Barr coming into the final hole, forced a play off when he birdied a two foot putt while his opponent could only watch a birdie putt lip out from 12 feet. The Scot then claimed the title with another birdie on the first play off hole while Barr, who had found the bunker with his approach shot, could only manage a par. The seven time European Order of Merit winner had been looking to end a 12 month title drought. His last victory was at the TCL Classic in China. Barr, who had led after the second and third rounds, began the day with a three stroke lead over Montgomerie. He could only manage an average par-round of 71 on the crucial last day while Montgomerie finished with a three under par 71 to close on level terms on a total of 11 under par 273.

The turning point was reached at the 13th hole when Barr, holding on to his three shot lead, made a bogey while Montgomerie birdied that hole to cut the lead down to just one stroke. Barr, a teaching professional in Singapore, turned up in Macau to hone his game before entering the qualifying school for the Japan Tour. It was only the second time that the 40 year old Montgomerie had won a play off in his career.

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