Third time's the charm as Laird wins Shriners in playoff

LAS VEGAS – The third time proved to be the charm for Martin Laird.

After failing to end matters on the 72nd hole and then again on the first playoff hole, Laird knocked in a 23-foot putt for birdie on the second extra hole to win the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Sunday’s fading light at TPC Summerlin.

Laird, who shared the overnight lead and led by three at the turn, made an astounding par on the 17th hole in regulation to protect his one-shot lead but missed his par attempt on the 72nd home from 28 feet and headed to a playoff against Austin Cook and Matthew Wolff.

On the first extra hole at the par-4 18th, Laird had a chance to end the tournament but his attempt from 31 feet just grazed the hole. But after Cook and Wolff both missed their birdie attempts on the 195-yard par-3 17th, Laird rolled in his winner.

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It was his first win in seven years and his second Shriners title; in 2009, he won in a playoff here on the 18th hole. He has four PGA Tour titles. Laird, playing on a sponsor’s exemption, will certainly move up from his ranking of 358 in the world.

“It’s been a while, so I’ve been working hard. Seven years since my last one,” Laird…

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