Simon Thornton missed a golden opportunity to retain his card as Peter Hanson ended a difficult personal week on a dramatic high note after holing a 30-foot eagle putt on the last to win the KLM Open.
The Royal County Down man dropped five shots in his last four holes, carding a five over 75 to finish tied for 37th on two under par.
Tied for 10th overnight, a top five finish would have catapulted Thornton into the top 115 in the Race to Dubai who will keep their cards at the end of the season.
And while he earned €11,880, a bogey-bogey-bogey-double bogey finish meant he moved up just five places in the money list to 153rd with earnings this year of €88,599 from 15 starts.
Five shots off the lead starting the final round, Thornton got off to a slow start and then bogeyed the eighth and 10th to slip down the leaderboard.
He birdied the 12th and 14th but finished in forgettable fashion as Hanson claimed a memorable victory in his last start before the Ryder Cup.
The Swede came close to withdrawing from the event at Hilversumsche GC after his one year old son Tim was hospitalised with a respiratory virus on Friday.
But with his son’s condition improving, his decision to continue paid off as he secured a fifth European Tour title with a stunning climax, closing with a 67 to finish on 14 under par, two shots clear of long-time leader Pablo Larrazábal and last week’s Omega European Masters champion Richie Ramsay.
“It’s always a nice feeling to win, but especially this week with how things have been with my son being ill,” said Hanson.
“But he is getting better and it’s great that I’m sitting here with this fantastic trophy.
“When he was put into hospital on Friday, I was panicking. He was not good for 12 to 14 hours there and as a parent that makes you feel very vulnerable.
“I just wanted to go back home and look after the family, but my wife convinced me to stay. They were in good hands; there was nothing I could do and she was telling me that, but when your kids get sick you don’t think straight.”
Quizzed on how he was able to maintain his concentration in trying circumstances, Hanson replied: “When we get a chance to lift these trophies, something just clicks in your head. I was just trying to stay focussed.
“This was needed. It’s been a bit of a slow summer for me, so this came at a perfect time to get confidence back and feel ready for The Ryder Cup.”
Larrazábal looked set to triumph when Hanson, trailing by one, drove into trouble at 16.
However, the Swede rescued a stunning par from the trees and was soon back in a tie for the lead as Larrazábal bogeyed the same hole.
Hanson then knocked in a monster putt for a three on the closing par five and was able to celebrate soon after as his nearest rival finished with a par.
“To see that ball drop was unbelievable,” said Hanson. “I haven’t won in two years but I have had a few chances. It’s always nice when you can finish it off. We are playing quality fields and quality courses so it means a lot, especially going into the Ryder Cup with a lot of confidence.”
Damien McGrane was the best of the Irish in joint 26th on four under after a closing 69 with Peter Lawrie tied for 32nd with Darren Clarke (70) after a 68.
Like Thornton, Ballyclare’s Gareth Maybin also finished with a double bogey seven, finishing joint 67th on six over after a final round 72.