Tyrrell Hatton has retained his title at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship after a final round at St Andrews in which Ross Fisher shot a course-record 61 at the home of golf.
On a calm day on the storied Old Course, even a bogey-free round by Fisher containing 11 birdies could not reel in overnight leader Hatton, who shot 66 for a three-stroke victory over his fellow Englishman.
Hatton became the first player in the 17-year history of the Dunhill Links to successfully defend the title in a tournament played over three Scottish courses – the Old Course, Kingsbarns and Carnoustie. His aggregate score of 24-under 264 was a tournament record, after rounds of 68-65-65-66.
Both of Hatton’s career titles have come at the Dunhill Links.
Fisher was runner-up for the second straight year. He had a putt for eagle from the Valley of Sin on No. 18, which would have sealed the first round of 59 in the history of the European Tour. It fell two feet short and he missed the birdie putt back, though still broke the course record – held jointly by six players – by a stroke.
Rory McIlroy shot even-par 72 to finish tied for 63rd at four-under-par, meaning he ended a season without a victory for only the second time in his professional career.
“It summed up my whole of 2017: Not much happening,” McIlroy said. “Couldn’t get out of neutral.
“I feel I’m a much better player than I was in 2011 and 2012, when I was able to win a couple of majors.
“I feel I can do better than that in the next 10 years and that’s why these next three months are very important for me to put some really good things in place, step away and just reassess where I’m at and where I need to be.”
Rhein Gibson was the best-placed Australian at 10-under for a share of 25th. Jason Scrivener was one of a group two shots back while Matthew Giles finished 66th after a three-over final round of 75 dropped his tournament total to three-under.