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He came up short in his bid to win a second European Tour title but Robert MacIntyre still has much to celebrate from his week’s work at the Dubai Desert Classic.

Trailing playing partner Paul Casey by one shot going into the final round at the Emirates Golf Club, 24-year-old MacIntyre ultimately had to settle for third place after closing with a two-over 74.

Casey, meantime, carded a two-under 70 to complete his 16th European Tour victory, four shots clear of South Africa’s Brandon Stone.

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“Sometimes it doesn’t go for you, and today was one of them days,” admitted MacIntyre afterwards. “I felt like I gave one away there today. 

“I just have to keep giving myself chances. Like today, if I keep giving myself these chances, then I’m going to bundle over the line again at some point.”

Despite his disappointment at not being able to add to his Cyprus Showdown victory from late last year, there was still much for MacIntyre to celebrate.

His third place finish will catapult him inside the world’s top-50 for the first time in his career, perhaps as high as 42nd. That puts him well on track to make his Masters debut in April. Assuming he can maintain his place inside the world’s top-50 through to the end of March, an invite from Augusta National will be winging its way to Oban. 

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Not only that, MacIntyre will also become the world’s top-ranked left-hander when the Official World Golf Ranking is updated on Monday morning, moving past two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson. 

He is also expected to overtake Tiger Woods for the first time in his career. Woods, who is sidelined at the moment following back surgery, is currently 44th on the standings.


author headshot

Michael McEwan is the Deputy Editor of bunkered and has been part of the team since 2004. In that time, he has interviewed almost every major figure within the sport, from Jack Nicklaus, to Rory McIlroy, to Donald Trump. The host of the multi award-winning bunkered Podcast and a member of Balfron Golfing Society, Michael is the author of three books and is the 2023 PPA Scotland 'Writer of the Year' and 'Columnist of the Year'. Dislikes white belts, yellow balls and iron headcovers. Likes being drawn out of the media ballot to play Augusta National.

Deputy Editor

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