Robert MacIntyre on brink of world’s top 50

Robert Mac Intyre

At the start of 2019, Robert MacIntyre was ranked 247th in the world. By the end of this week, he could be inside the top 50.

The Oban man needs to finish in at least a two-way tie for second in the season-ending DP World Tour Championship, which gets underway on Thursday, to move into the top 50.

Why is this so significant? If he can get there and stay there by the end of the year, he will qualify for next year’s Masters Tournament. The top 50 players on the OWGR at the end of the calendar year receive an invite to play in the first major of the season at Augusta National.

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MacIntyre, 23, came up agonisingly short of securing his place at the Open where he finished in a tie for sixth. Masters places go to the top four players and ties from the previous year’s Open Championship.

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MacIntyre is also bidding to become just the 12th Scot, and the first since Marc Warren in 2006, to win the European Tour’s ‘Rookie of the Year’ award this week.

The Glencruitten golfer finished in a tie for eighth in the Nedbank Golf Challenge last week – his seventh top-10 finish of the season – to leapfrog American Kurt Kitayama in the race for the title. 

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Heading into this week’s final event of the season, MacIntyre is 11th on the Race to Dubai with Kitayama, twice a winner this year, in 12th. The pair play together in Thursday’s opening round.

MacIntyre could also set a new record for the best ranking achieved by a Scottish player in their rookie season on the European Tour.

That record currently belongs to the late Gordon Brand Jnr, who finished seventh on the OOM at the end of his debut season in 1982.

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