Anders Forsbrand claimed an historic wire-to-wire victory in the SSE Scottish Open, holding off a stunning charge from Philip Golding to become the first Swede to win on the European Senior Tour.
The 51 year old, who began the day with a three stroke cushion, always had a stranglehold on the tournament at Fairmont St Andrews, but Englishman Golding’s second consecutive eight under par round of 64 put Forsbrand under pressure in the closing stages.
However, the ice-cool Scandinavian held firm and a final round of 67 gave him a winning total of 17 under par 199, one shot clear of Golding, who finished runner up in just his second Senior Tour event, and three ahead of David J Russell.
It was Forsbrand’s first victory in 17 years, having claimed the last of his six European Tour titles in the 1995 German Masters, and represents the start of a new chapter for Swedish golf.
Forsbrand was one of the Swedish pioneers of on The European Tour in the 1980s and 1990s, but after seven years away from the game spent coaching the Austrian national side, he had a relatively slow start to his Senior Tour career last year, ending the 2011 season in 55th position on the Order of Merit.
However he made a brighter start to the new campaign, and finished joint runner up in the ISPS Handa PGA Seniors Championship in June, before claiming this maiden title in the 20th anniversary edition of the SSE Scottish Senior Open.
“It’s fantastic to be the first Swede to win on the Senior Tour,” said Forsbrand, who won the 1991 Dunhill Cup atSt Andrews’ Old Course with Per-Ulrik Johansson and Mats Lanner. “It’s wonderful.
“This year I saw some really good signs. I’ve played really good but the putter has not been co-operating, but this week I rolled a few putts. Yesterday was great and today I holed some good ones. You need to hole putts to win.”