Marshall takes Lyle’s hickory world title

GIRONA, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 16: Andrew Marshall of England poses for a picture after the second round of the European Tour qualifying school final stage at PGA Catalunya Resort on November 16, 2014 in Girona, Spain.  (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
GIRONA, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 16: Andrew Marshall of England poses for a picture after the second round of the European Tour qualifying school final stage at PGA Catalunya Resort on November 16, 2014 in Girona, Spain. (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
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Sandy Lyle’s title as World Hickory Open champion has been claimed by Englishman Andrew Marshall, but organisers believe the Scot, absent on this occasion due to upcoming Champions Tour commitments, will be back in the future to try and reclaim the crown.

After finishing as runner-up to Lyle 12 months ago, Marshall, who is attached to Dereham in Norfolk, went one better as he followed an opening 67 on the Buddon course at Carnoustie with a 76 on the Championship layout in the Angus town.

He finished a shot ahead of American amateur Cliff Martin (69-75), with Carnoustie’s Fraser Mann (71-75) two shots further back in third in an event that featured 120 players from 18 different countries.

“The scoring was pretty good and I’d say that was down to two or three things,” said Lionel Freedman, the event’s brainchild and chairman. “The quality of the players, first and foremost, and also the quality of the courses, which were both in superb condition, while we were blessed with very good weather on this occasion, too.”

On Lyle, he added: “We got a nice note from him saying he needed to try and get more Champions Tour ranking points, but I think we will get him back again, hopefully next year at Panmure.”