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Branden Grace completes a wire-to-wire victory at the Dunhill Links Championship - South African now third in European money list

Updated: Sunday, 07 Oct 2012 18:38

Grace has had much to smile about this year
Grace has had much to smile about this year

South Africa's Branden Grace won for the fifth time this year as he claimed the Dunhill Links Championship at St Andrews by two shots from Dane Thorbjorn Olesen.

The 24-year-old from Pretoria began the week with a European Tour record-equalling 60 at Kingsbarns and was never overtaken after that.

Olesen did catch him with seven holes to go, but Grace promptly birdied the next three holes and with another on the last finished with a tournament record-equalling 22-under-par total.

Scot Stephen Gallacher, winner in 2004, was fourth on his own and still had hopes of catching Grace when he played the wrong ball at the 16th, incurred a two-stroke penalty and ran up a quadruple bogey eight.

A birdie at the last did at least enable him to finish in a seven-way tie for fifth.

Padraig Harrington was the best of the Irish on 1o under, with Shane Lowry a shot further back.

It feels awesome," said Grace afterwards, who has risen from outside the world's top 300 to inside the top 40 and might even yet deny number one McIlroy the European money list title next month.