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Ryder Cup hopeful Paul Dunne laments short-game shortfall

(Photo: Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

Paul Dunne admitted his short game let him down, despite a second-placed finish at the Spanish Open that boosts his Ryder Cup chances.

The Irishman was on course for one of the biggest victories of his career as he held a one-shot lead going into the final day’s play at the Centro Nacional de Golf after shooting a 4-under 68 through the third round on Saturday.

However, local favourite Jon Rahm came from two shots back to claim the title on Sunday.

Although the Greystones golfer missed out on a chance to move to the brink of the world’s top-50, he was in no way downbeat about his second-place finish as remains happy with his current form.

“I felt like I hit the ball great,” he said. “My short game let me down a little bit. I hit a lot of chips that I thought were better than they were.

“I just kept misjudging bounces; some of them skidded, some of them bounced soft. I feel like when I played for one I got the other result. It’s a little frustrating not to get anything going, not to get any putts to go in. It’s just one of those days.

“My game is great. I hit the ball fantastic, I was hitting it long and straight. I feel good going into the next few weeks. Obviously I’m disappointed not to win, but it is what it is.”

Dunne, who banks 166,000 euros as a result of his second-place finish, has moved to his highest-ever ranking of 68th in the world after recording three straight top-10 finishes.

He is currently seventh in the European Ryder Cup standings, ahead of Rory McIlroy, with the top four certain to be part of Thomas Bjorn’s 12-man team for Paris.

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