David Higgins and Damien McGrane will have to come through the Irish Open qualifier to get some European Tour action next season after they finished in the pack in the PGA Play-Offs at Walton Heath.
With the top four earning spots in the BMW PGA at Wentworth and the top two set for the British Masters, there was more at stake than just the £3,500 top prize.
In the end, Surrey's Robert Coles added a 66 to rounds of 68 and 65 to win by a shot from Scot Paul O'Hara (66) — winner the Titleist and FootJoy PGA Professional Championship at Luttrellstown Castle in June — on 17-under par.
England's Richard Wallis and Scotland's Gavin Hay were third and fourth respectively after a sudden-death play-off as they finished on nine-under-par.
Higgins was tied seventh on seven-under after a 72 with Thornton (69) and McGrane (72) joint 11th on three-under-par.
While the top six on last year's Irish Region's Order of Merit earned spots in the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open this season, that will not be the case next year.
Instead, the PGA will run a 36-hole Irish Open qualifier, scheduled for the weekend before the Irish Open at Ballyliffin, with the top six making the megabucks Irish Open field.