Laird overcomes Marino

Laird overcomes Marino

Scotsman clinches Arnold Palmer Invitational title

The Scotsman's second win on the PGA Tour came via a rough and tumble three-over-par round of 75 in the final round and was helped by Marino's double bogey on the penultimate hole.

Laird, who finished with an eight-under-par total of 280, had a two-stroke overnight lead that evaporated when he made three bogeys on the front nine. It got worse for Laird on the par-four 11th when he went from fairway bunker to water for a double bogey.  But Laird regained his composure with a birdie on the 12th and although he bogeyed the 14th, successive birdies followed. Marino, seeking his first PGA Tour win, was in the frame before he hit a greenside bunker shot on the 17th over the back of a treacherously hard and fast green for a double bogey.

Laird only needed a par on the final hole to secure victory but he sent his drive into rough and while he found the green with his second shot he was still 87 feet from the hole. Memories of a missed opportunity at the Barclays in August, the last time Laird was in such a winning position, no doubt came flooding back.

Laird took a three-shot lead into the final day of the Barclays but he three-putted the final hole and then lost to American Matt Kuchar in a playoff.  This time, however, Laird stroked the ball to just under four feet and then finished off the job, releasing his tension with a Tiger Woods-style fist pump.

It was a good day for Britain at the Bay Hill course with Englishman Justin Rose shooting a 68 to tie for third with Australian Marc Leishman (71) and American David Toms (72)two shots back of Laird.