Colin Montgomerie so close to winning start in Hawaii

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Colin Montgomerie started his 2018 campaign with a second-placed finish - but it could easily have been a win for the Scot in Hawaii.

The 54-year-old lost out by a shot to American Jerry Kelly in the Mitsubishi Electric Championship after a two-stroke swing at the 54th and final hole at Hualalai.

Montgomerie led by a shot on 18-under-par standing on the 18th tee in the last round only to find a fairway bunker with his tee shot.

His approach then flew over the green and, after Kelly had holed an 18-foot birdie putt, Montgomerie missed a six-footer for par to force a play-off.

The eight-time European Tour No 1 closed with a 69, having opened with two 65s to take a two-shot lead into the final round.

“Not the finish I hoped for but congratulations to Jerry,” wrote Montgomerie on Twitter afterwards.

The limited-field event included winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

Despite that last-hole disappointment, it was an encouraging effort from Montgomerie in his first outing since he started to work with Kingsfield-based coach Kevin Craggs late last year.

He is now heading to the United Arab Emirates for next week’s Omega Dubai Desert Classic, having secured an invitation for an event he won in 1996.