Even before having cancer diagnosed four years ago, Mark James had golf in perspective.

"Golf wasn't exactly life or death for me," he said.

Becoming the first European to win a major on the Champions Tour isn't going to change that.

The former Ryder Cup captain shot a 1-over-par 73 and held off Jose Maria Canizares for a one-stroke victory yesterday at the Senior Players Championship in Dearborn, Mich.

James finished at 13-under 275.

The first of James's two operations for testicular cancer was in October 2000. James said he didn't feel like himself until the middle of 2002.

"It's been a dream, really," James said.

For the second straight day, he caught a break when a competitor collapsed.

Canizares had double bogeys at Nos. 14 and 17 in a 1-under 71, finishing at 12-under 276.

"I'm very disappointed," the Spaniard said. "I double bogeyed two holes, and that's the difference."

In the third round, Dana Quigley was the co-leader with James until he ruined a strong round with a quadruple bogey at the par-5 17th.

Bruce Fleisher (71) finished third at 11 under and Bruce Lietzke (71) was fourth, another stroke back.

* PGA: Mark Hensby tapped in for par on the second playoff hole at the John Deere Classic in Silvis, Ill., finally breaking through for his first career victory.

Hensby shot a 66 to finish at 16-under 268 and got the victory when John Morgan hit his drive on the par-3 16th far left of the green.

Morgan waved goodbye as the shot sailed into thick brush. He chipped across the green and into the bunker, nearly made the sand shot and stood by and watched as Hensby two-putted for par and the $685,000 winner's check.

It wasn't all bad news for Morgan, though.

The victory would have earned Hensby a trip to next week's British Open at Royal Troon, but he declined.

Instead the slot went to Morgan (65), a native of England.

* EUROPE: Thomas Levet tied the lowest round of his career with an 8-under 63 that gave him a one-shot victory in the Scottish Open in Luss.

Along with his first victory in three years, the Frenchman earned an unlikely trip to the British Open.

"It is something enormous," Levet said after a 29 on the back nine. "I don't think I will sleep tonight. Too much adrenaline. Too much happiness."

Meantime, Andrew Oldcorn survived a playoff to earn one of 15 British Open spots through final qualifying in Ayershire, Scotland.

Oldcorn was given a five-year exemption for winning the 2001 Volvo PGA Championship, a major event on the European tour. But the Royal & Ancient switched it to three years without telling Oldcorn, and his exemption no longer existed.

* LGPA: Meg Mallon completed her North American double by running away to win the Canadian Women's Open in Niagara Falls, Ontario, a week after winning the U.S. Women's Open.

Mallon shot a final-round 2-under 70, finishing with an 18-under 270 to win $195,000 at Legends on the Niagara Battlefield course.

Mallon became the first woman to win both U.S. and Canadian titles in the same year and her 18 under matched a tournament record for lowest score, first set by Brandie Burton in 1998 at Windsor, Ontario.

Former Ryder Cup captain Mark James (1-over 73) becomes first European to win a Champions Tour major. Jose Maria Canizares finished in second place.