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Laird beats out McIlroy at Texas Open

World No2 Rory McIlroy finally showed some of the form that took him to the top of the game last year on Sunday, but it wasn't quite enough to stop fellow Brit Martin Laird from nabbing the title at the Texas Open in San Antonio.

Laird, from Glasgow, Scotland, nailed a superb 9-under par 63 to tie the course record and oust McIlroy by two strokes for his first win since the Arnold Palmer Invitational two years ago.

Although he started the day someway behind the leaders, Laird blitzed the front nine, nailing five birdies in his opening six holes to chase down American Billy Horschel.

And as McIlroy started his own charge, Laird had the presence of mind to shoot three consecutive birdies in his final three holes to hold off the Northern Irishman and book himself a trip to Augusta National.

"It's unbelievable. I've been asked probably 30 times in the last couple of weeks, 'are you in Augusta? Are you in Augusta?' and I've had to say 'no', and every time it kind of hurt me a little bit after playing the last couple [of Masters]," Laird told media after his victory.

"So that was my major motivation - to try to get back into tournaments like that this year - and this win goes a long way in doing that."


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