Bidding to land a fourth DP World Tour triumph but first since 2015, a resilient Ramsay held a one-shot lead playing the last at the Ryder Cup venue only to “duff” his second shot from the middle of the fairway into water and walk off with a double-bogey 6.
The 38-year-old hid his face by pulling down his cap as the disappointment hit him, having known that a golden chance to join some of the greats of European golf had slipped from his grasp.
That said, a par to close would have only seen him get into a play-off with Olesen after the Dane finished eagle-birdie for the second day running to land a sixth tour triumph on 10-under-par and the umpteenth by players from that country over the past few seasons.
“Played really steady. Mentally it was very, very good,” said a visibly disappointed Ramsay. “But, ultimately, you don’t get the job done and that’s what matters. It’s probably the biggest kick in the teeth you are going to get in my career.”
Faced with 220 yards for that second shot, the Edinburgh-based Aberdonian went with a utility club rather than a 4-iron only to hit one of the worst blows of his career at the worst possible time.
“It was just a horrible yardage and I kind of didn’t fully commit as I was aiming to ride it on the wind and I just duffed it,” he added. “I did everything right bar one shot and it was the one shot that killed me.
“I made a putt on 14 (from more than 40 feet for a birdie-2), but I didn’t make many others. I felt like I could have had more breathing room, but I didn’t hit the shot I needed to – simple as that.”
In contrast, Syme was pleased to secure his lofty position, finishing with a flourish with three birdies in the last four holes as he signed off with a 70.
“That was good fun, that’s what you practice for,” said the 26-year-old. “There are only positives. It didn’t quite go my way at the early part of the round, but I kept going with it and a few putts dropped towards the end. It’s been a good week, regardless.”
The splendid effort came on the back of two missed cuts in Spain and, even before the opening round at the Sutton Coldfield venue, he’d not felt confident about this week.
“It’s mental,” Syme said, smiling. “I was deep thinking Tuesday and Wednesday, I always have a library of stuff me and my dad (Stuart, his coach) work on and we were around the houses with that.
“I guess I got something that worked on Wednesday, got a good feeling, trusted it more the week went on the more good shots I hit. Towards the end I didn’t miss a shot.”
Olesen holed from 28 feet on the 17th then 35 feet on the 18th as he recorded a first win since being found not guilty of a series of charges from a flight from the US in 2019. That led to him being suspended for a spell, but the 32-year-old is now getting his career back on track.
“It’s a privilege to get your name there,” he said of emulating the likes of Seve Ballesteros, Sandy Lyle, Nick Faldo and Colin Montgomerie. “The crowds have been amazing from Thursday and onward. Got so much support. So I’m really happy.”
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