England’s Simon Dyson won the Irish Open in dramatic fashion on Sunday as he held off a ferocious challenge from Australia’s Richard Green to take the title by one shot.
Dyson carded a four under par 67 to finish on 15 under for the tournament and that was enough to secure the fifth title of his career.
The 33-year-old finished his round tied with Green at the top of the leaderboard and he had to endure a nervous wait to see if the Australian would win the trophy with a birdie on the 18th hole or at least force a play-off with a par.
Green had led by one shot on several occasions during the final round, only to crack at the last hole as a bogey dropped him to 14 under and gifted Dyson his first title since his triumph at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship two years ago.
Scotland’s Stephen Gallacher birdied the last to finish third on 12 under, one place ahead of Austrian Bernd Wiesberger on 11 under.
England’s David Howell, who had been in a three-way tie with Dyson and Green at the top of the leaderboard overnight, was unable to maintain his momentum and ended tied for eighth place after a two over par 73.
It was a remarkable finale to a gripping final round that saw the lead change hands right up to the 18th.
Green had hit four birdies in the front nine but Dyson responded with four of his own after the turn to keep the pressure on.
That set the stage for drama at the last. Dyson missed a nine-foot birdie chance on the 18th, but left-hander Green — playing in the group behind — couldn’t take advantage.
The 40-year-old, who finished 16th at the recent British Open, hit his own birdie attempt from almost 60 feet well past the hole and then missed the par putt as well to end his hopes of a play-off.
Meanwhile, US Open champion Rory McIlroy’s disappointing tournament finished on a suitably downbeat note as he carded a round of 71, leaving him well behind the leaders at three under par.
McIlroy’s fellow Northern Ireland star Graeme McDowell fared a little better, hitting three birdies on the front nine to finish with a one under par round of 65 that left him four under for the tournament.