With the 145th Open Championship done and dusted, we take a look at five moments that mattered from the final day at Royal Troon.
Humble Henrik dedicates win
The Swede was a little lost for words following his thrilling major win. However, standing at the podium with the Claret Jug in hand and millions watching, Stenson remembered his dear friend.
Mike Gerbich, from Scottsdale in the US, passed away on Wednesday and Stenson dedicated the watershed win to Gerbich, who was fighting cancer. It was a touching moment and proof of why Stenson is one of the most likable players on Tour. Well played sir.
So close yet so far for Phil
It’s not often you shoot 63 and 65 and go on to lose a major. In fact, Phil Mickelson’s 17-under-par finish at Royal Troon was enough to win 140 of the past 144 Open Championships. Think about that for a second…
And that 17 under could have been even better, should that putt on the 18th in the opening round not lipped out. That bit of daylight robbery cost him what would have been a record 62.
Then on Sunday, his bogey-free six under 65 was just not good enough. Lefty’s eagle putt on the 16th looked in for all money, but again the golfing Gods denied him. That’s two strokes…and Mickelson lost by three…
Rory’s still got it
The Northern Irishman saved his best for last at The Open, carding a four under 67 that included six birdies.
To give that round some perspective, that score was only bested by two players on Sunday: Stenson and Mickelson.
The T5 finish was a comeback the 2014 champion desperately needed, especially after his two over 73 on Saturday effectively ended his chances, leaving McIlroy wallowing in the mire. Looks like its back to the gym for the four time major winner…
Holmes the best of the rest
Such was Mickelson’s and Stenson’s dominance on Sunday, the rest of the field seemed locked in a different battle altogether.
As such, JB Holmes can certainly be proud of his solo third finish. The big hitting American – who is the top-ranked player on the PGA Tour for driving distance – was a picture of consistency around Royal Troon.
His back-to-back 70s were followed up by consecutive 69s to leave him on six under for the championship. Take away his three double bogeys over the week and the Kentucky native would have perhaps been in real contention for a first major win.
Sergio wins the popularity contest
Sergio Garcia has developed quite the following over the years. Twenty-two top-ten finishes in majors would do that to almost anyone.
The Spaniard would settle for another this time around, but perhaps the lasting memory he will take from Troon is his time spent with Englishman Andrew Johnston.
During the third round, the duo drew arguably the largest gallery, with the constant cries of ‘Beeef’ for the rather beefy Johnston spurring Garcia on as much as their intended target.
A solid final round of 69 made up somewhat for the disappointing 73 from Saturday. The support from fans would have reminded Garcia that while he is still searching for that elusive major, he is certainly still a champion in their hearts.