Craig Howie wins on Pro Golf Tour in Germany

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Craig Howie has one hand on a Challenge Tour card for next season after landing his breakthrough win in the professional ranks.

The Peebles player beat compatriot Chris Robb in a play-off to land the Leipziger Golf Open in Machern, Germany.

The win catapulted Howie to the top of the Pro Golf Tour Order of Merit with just three events remaining this season.

Robb is up to second and the top five at the end of the campaign secure promotion to the Challenge Tour.

Howie, who is in his rookie season in the paid ranks, followed opening rounds of 67 and 69 with a superb closing 64 for a 16-under total.

That was matched by Robb as the Aberdonian carded scores of 70-64-66, leaving the pair in a sudden-death shoot-out at Leipzig Golf & Country Club.

Howie won that with a birdie at the third extra hole, enjoying the sweet taste of victory just a fortnight after he’d been pipped in a play-off by Czech player Ondrej Lieser in the Zell am See - Kaprun Open.

“I am very happy about this success,” said Howie, a former Scottish Boys champion who was at Stirling University in his final few years in the amateur ranks.

Commenting on the fact he’s finished joint-second, second and first in his last three events, he added: “My game has been very solid for weeks, and I have made many tactically good decisions.

“It was my goal to reach the top five and proceed to the Challenge Tour. That I am now first in the rankings is fantastic!”