sport

Monty regains title in style

Colin Montgomerie led from start to finish to successfully defend his Travis Perkins Masters title on the European Senior Tour with a dominant ten shot victory at Woburn.

Montgomerie won his first Senior Tour title at last year's event with a six shot victory, but his defence was even more emphatic as he shot a closing 67 to finish on 12-under on the Duke's Course.

The score was two shots better than last year's total and far too good for the rest of the field, as the Scot extended a four-shot lead he held going into the final round over American Mike Cunning.

At one stage, Cunning did manage to get the gap down to just two shots at the 5th , but Montgomerie responded immediately and as he pulled away Cunning had to settle for a 74 to finish on one-under.

That was one shot behind the trio who finished in a distant second behind Montgomerie on two-under - Austrian Gordon Manson (67), Switzerland's Andre Bossert (71) and Montgomerie's former college teammate Tim Thelen.

"I'm delighted to come back here and successfully defend this great title," said Montgomerie. "It probably looks pretty comfortable, and in the end it was, but Mike (Cunning) managed to get to within two shots and it could easily have been one shot at one point.

"I didn't start that well, but I made a birdie on the sixth hole and then I just started moving away really.

"So it's been another great week. There are two places in England which I really love. One is Sunningdale and one is here at Woburn. It's always a privilege to come here and I'm very proud to win around here once again."

Montgomerie follows Carl Mason (2006-07) as the only other player to successfully defend the Travis Perkins Masters title, and as well as setting a new lowest winning total in the tournament's history, he also broke two of the Mason's Senior Tour records, including one that has stood for 11 years.

Englishman Mason had been the quickest player in Senior Tour history to win four times, doing so in 11 appearances in his maiden campaign in 2003, but Montgomerie has now achieved the feat in just nine tournaments.

Meanwhile, Montgomerie's winner's cheque of €56,376 at Woburn Golf Club also means that he is the first player in the history of the Senior Tour to earn more than €500,000 in a single season, smashing Mason's previous record haul for a year of €412,376 set in 2007.

"It is super to get those records," he said. "You never tire of achieving things like that, no matter how old you are. It has been a fantastic season for me so far, and I'm enjoying every minute of it.

"I'm very proud to win this title for a second year running, and I'm now looking forward to going to Russia to try to win another tournament."

Having already claimed the US Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid and the US Senior Open, as well as finishing runner up to Bernhard Langer in The Senior Open Championship Presented by Rolex, Montgomerie is also now firmly on course to become only the second former European Tour Number One to win the Senior Tour Order of Merit after Ian Woosnam in 2008.