Ricard Lockner struggled for several days to judge the speed of the synthetic greens at the Major Series of Putting.
By Sunday, the 45-year-old from Stockholm was dialed in.
Lockner made birdie on the 18th hole to defeat Jeff Gibralter of Rockwall, Texas, 1 up in the One Putt for One Drop high roller tournament.
Lockner, who manages a golf course in his native Sweden, earned $110,000 for his victory. Gibralter pocketed $64,000.
“I was struggling the first 10 days,” Lockner said. “This is probably the only good tournament I had in the whole two weeks because I had problems with the speeds on the greens in the beginning. It was so slow. You had to hit it so hard, and I can’t get it right.”
Eric Carrigan of Los Angeles won 3 and 2 over Jacob Stasiulewicz of Scottsdale, Arizona, in the third-place match to take home $40,000. Stasiulewicz cashed for $26,000.
The event featured a $11,111 entry fee and benefited the One Drop Foundation, which provides access to clean water in disadvantaged parts of the world.
Former tennis pro Mardy Fish upset top seed Taylor Montgomery, a former Foothill High and UNLV golfer, 3 and 2 in the round of 16. Professional poker player Daniel Negreanu lost to Lockner 5 and 3 in the quarterfinals, while actor Jack Wagner and former major league pitcher Josh Beckett lost in the round of 16.
Gibralter, a 49-year-old professional poker player and former mini-tour golfer, trailed almost the entire match against Lockner after the left-handed Swede birdied the second hole.
Gibralter was 2 down after his short par putt on No. 13 horseshoed the cup and stayed out, but he made a long birdie on No. 14 to get 1 down.
Gibralter then evened the match on No. 17 with his third birdie in four holes.
“I was proud of the way I hung in there and really fought at the end, dug deep,” Gibralter said.
Lockner had the honor on No. 18 and brushed in the right-to-left breaking, 18-footer for birdie to put the pressure on Gibralter.
“I had the line. I knew the line,” Lockner said. “Totally calm, just had to put it in. Give it a good run at the hole.”
Gibralter faced a similar situation in the round of 16 against Francois Plamondon and rammed home a birdie to extend a match he eventually won on the 23rd hole.
But this time, Gibralter’s putt curled inches below the cup to give Lockner the win.
“I made three of the last five (putts) to put pressure on him,” Gibralter said. “In this wind, it’s not the easiest thing in the world, and when he hit it on 18, I knew he made it. He deserved it. He played great. He didn’t make any mistakes.”
Major Series of Putting
One Putt for One Drop results
Ricard Lockner def. Jeff Gibralter, 1 up.
Eric Carrigan def. Jacob Stasiulewicz, 3 and 2.
Lockner def. Stasiulewicz, 3 and 2.
Gibralter def. Carrigan, 2 and 1.
Stasiulewicz def. Anders Olsson, 2 and 1.
Lockner def. Daniel Negreanu, 5 and 3.
Carrigan def. Mardy Fish, 1 up.
Gibralter def. Chris Johnson, 1 up.