Richard Boxall says Dubai Desert Classic win is 'bliss' for Stephen Gallacher

Last Updated: 03/02/13 4:06pm

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Gallacher: winner for the second time

Gallacher: winner for the second time

Sky Bet

It was hardly a nerveless final-round performance, but Richard Boxall says Stephen Gallacher was a worthy winner of the Dubai Desert Classic.

The overnight leader looked to be in good shape to record only his second ever European Tour victory until bogeys at the first two holes on Sunday morning threatened to derail his charge.

But Gallacher recovered to post a final-round 71, including his fifth eagle of the week at the 16th, and Sky Sports expert Boxall said he and caddie Damien Moore needed to dig deep to hold off the challenge of Richard Sterne.

He said: "There was a three-putt on the first and a wildish tee shot on the second into bunkers. Your confidence goes from up here to right down there.

"He must have been thinking 'please don't let it be one of those days'. He could have gone round in 78 or 79, but it wasn't to be.

"In Steve's mind, he must have been thinking it had to be his day, especially after the way he putted on Saturday. He holed two shots from the fairway and the bunker shot he holed on the 18th on Saturday night meant it was just his week.

"He had to dig very deep today though, especially after such a bad start. He had to take a deep breath and that's when you need a decent caddie on the bag to say 'listen, we've only played two holes and we can still go on and do this'.

"That's what they did, they teamed up together."

Qualify

The Scot, who is the nephew of former Ryder Cup captain Bernard Gallacher, will shoot up the world rankings and is set to qualify for the World Golf Championship events, including the 64-man Accenture Match Play Championship in Arizona later this month.

He later said he dreams of making his debut in the Masters this year and Boxall hopes that, unlike his first European Tour win nine years ago, this victory provides a catalyst for his career.

"It must be bliss and you'd have to think all your Christmases have come at once," he said.

"To get into those events will be great for him and if you play alright in those it's difficult to get out of them.

"2004 was the last time he won at the Dunhill Links and I thought he'd kick on from there and win a few more, but he hasn't.

"He's done it here now and let's hope he can take the bone, kick on and win a few more tournaments."

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