Thursday, 27 July 2017
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PadraigHamiltonPadraig Harrington won on the European tour at Vilamoura this weekend, raising him from 159th to 97th in the rankings as he held off the challenge of defending champion Andy Sullivan at the Portugal Masters showing calm under pressure with a closing 65 to finish 23 under par.

Sullivan won the event by nine shots last season and this year looked good with birdies on four out of his first five holes giving him 22 under par at the end of the weekend.

 Harrington found himself three shots off the lead at one point but after a run of three birdies in four holes he moved ahead.

This is Harrington's 15th win on the European Tour and his first since he won the US PGA Championship in 2008.

"I haven't won yet this year, so I know the year is nearly done, it's always important to get a win every year, a winning year," he told www.europeantour.com.

"It's a big win. Portugal Masters is a big tournament. I've been coming here for 10 years so I've always liked it down here. I've always liked coming down to Portugal.

"I tried to be really aggressive. The golf course suited me and I just tried to go after every pin I could and make birdies. I have a pretty good short game that was on form this week."

Harrington received a winner's cheque for €333,000, with his first European Tour victory in eight years having the potential of making him more money if he can repeat the form shown at Vilamoura.