Russell Knox shoots super putt double for play-off win at Irish Open

Russell Knox shoots super putt double for play-off win at Irish Open

Making two of them from nearly identical positions.

Knox was controversially overlooked for a Ryder Cup wild card in 2016 despite being ranked 20th in the world at the time, higher than seven members of the European team who would go on to lose at Hazeltine.

Runner-up in the French Open the previous week got Knox into the British Open. He has boosted his chances of making Europe's Ryder Cup team for the match against the United States in France in September.

Fox and Knox produced as many twists as Dr Seuss envisioned, going back and forth in a thrilling final day, and while it was Knox (stay with me) coming out on top, Fox didn't have many complaints as he claimed second and the $1.1 million New Zealand dollars which came with it (€ 665,614).

"I feel like I've made some improvements over the last couple of days on that and at least I know I'm trending in the right direction heading into the Open Championship".

Fox was looking for his first European Tour win.

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Unfortunately for the 31-year-old, that's when Knox struck.

"Had one putt been an inch either way I'd still be out there now or even with the trophy in my hand". He thought he'd achieved it when his 10-foot birdie putt on the 18 was tracking to the hole. Each time Knox responded, with the pair the last ones standing in a round where several players launched bids at the title. "I'm happy, I hit the shots I wanted to down the stretch, felt comfortable out there and it was close. But well done to Russ, he played some great golf today".

As if he required any more motivation going into the Scottish Open, which tees off at Gullane at Thursday, and at next week's Open Championship at Carnoustie, then there it is, wrapped up in blue and gold. South Africa's Zander Lombard and Andy Sullivan of England took the other two spots for finishing joint sixth.

Knox is the first Scotsman to win the Irish Open since Colin Montgomerie in 2001. He moves to fifth on the European money list from 25 at the start of the week.

Rory McIlroy believes his game showed signs of progress during the weekend at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, giving him confidence ahead of The Open.

And when the players returned to the 18th for a sudden-death play-off the situation was repeated, Knox holing from nearly exactly the same place for birdie before Fox saw his attempt from close range catch the edge of the hole and spin out.

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