Golf Talk With Greg Holman – #87

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I was almost right and I was way off. I was almost right that Rory McIlroy would win the British Open. He finished third. But I was way off on the winning score.

The scoring was a lot better at the old course than I anticipated. For one thing the wind didn’t reach gale force like it often does and the cool damp conditions didn’t seem to hinder play. And for the most part, golfers were able to avoid the dangerous pot bunkers for which escape is suspect.

Cam Smith claimed the Claret Jug in the 150th Open Championship with a twenty under 268. The main reason Smith beat McIlroy and the rest of the field was his amazing putting. McIlroy hit all 18 greens in regulation and took 36 putts to shoot 70. Rookie Cam Young eagled the 18th hole to finish at -19. Meanwhile Cam Smith was making putts for birdie. At one point he had a sting of five in a row, and he was making ten foot putts to save par. Exactly what you have to do at St. Andrews.

Cam Smith’s performance was historic. His closing round 64 was the lowest final round by a winner ever at the old course in 30 British Opens at the home of golf, and his 4-day total of 268 was the lowest score to par in any Major. Smith also became the first Aussie to win the Open Championship since Greg Norman in 1993.

By the way, Tiger Woods did not make the cut. As he put it his first hole of the tournament when he flopped a wedge shot into the burn that guards the green pretty much summed up his play. He never could recover and get anything going after that.

Smith won $2.5 million for his first Major win. The other Cam, Cameron Young fired a third and earned $933,000. Tommy Fleetwood and Viktor Hovland tied for 4th. Brian Harman and Dustin Johnson finished tied for sixth. Bryson DeChambeau and Jordan Spieth and Patrick Cantlay tied for eighth to round out the top ten.

Here’s something odd. You wouldn’t think Cam or Cameron would be such a common name. The defending champion in the next two tournaments on tour are Cameron Champ and Cam Davis.

The British Open was the last Major of the season, but players are still competing for Fedex points. The Fedex St. Jude Championship will take place August 18th through 21st and the Tour Championship will take place August 18th through August 28th in Atlanta where the winner will pick up $2.16 million. The winner of the Fedex Cup will get an additional $15 million to determine the #1 player of the year.

If you are hitting the links this weekend you probably aren’t playing for that kind of money, but good luck and hit ’em straight.

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