Strong back nine takes Tony Stafford to victory

TONY Stafford (Gleneagles) is the new Scottish senior men's amateur match-play champion. He beat former Walker Cup player Sandy Pirie (Hazlehead) by 3 and 1 in the final over the Montgomerie course at Kinross Golf Club on Saturday.

Pirie, 68-years old and the 13th of 32 qualifiers, was three up at the turn with par golf, but a week's competitive golf seemed to catch up on him after that, plus the fact that Stafford came on to his game.

Stafford won the 10th with a birdie, the 12th with a par and the 13th with a birdie to square the match.

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Stafford, the No?3 seed and 11 years younger than his opponent, went two up with a par at the 14th and a birdie at the 15th. He completed his come-from-behind victory with a par at the 17th where Pirie was bunkered.

Stafford was roughly two over par for the holes played.

It was not a case of third-time lucky for Pirie. He also lost in the Scottish men's amateur championship finals of 1972 and 1974.

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