Dougherty lifts his Ryder hopes

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The Independent Online

Peter Hanson defied cold, wet and windy conditions to give Sweden their first home winner of the SAS Masters for 10 years here yesterday.

The 30-year-old, whose only previous European Tour victory in 174 starts came in Spain three years ago, hung on in a nervous finish to lift the first prize by one shot from his compatriot Pelle Edberg and England's Nick Dougherty.

For Dougherty it meant a runner-up finish in the event for the second year running, but there was real drama attached to his performance this time.

The 26-year-old Ryder Cup hopeful tweaked his back during the night and in trying to warm up it got only worse. "What a day. If my chiropractor had been here he might have told me to pull out, so I'm glad he wasn't," said Dougherty. "After all I've been through I was going to finish no matter what." He earned just short of £104,000 and although he stays 14th in the Ryder Cup race he is now in much closer touch with two events to go.

German Martin Kaymer finished in joint 14th place and is now little more than £200 behind 10th-placed Soren Hansen in the Cup standings.

Britain's Chris Wood, making his professional debut, tied for 18th.