SOUTHPORT, England — During one of Jordan Spieth’s many low points Sunday in the British Open, his caddie reminded him of a photo from a Mexico beach holiday two weeks ago that showed him in All-Star company that included Michael Phelps and Michael Jordan.Trailing for the first time all weekend at Royal Birkdale — and lucky it was only one stroke, thanks to a shot from the driving range — the 23-year-old Texan followed with a birdie-eagle-birdie-birdie stretch that allowed him to close with a 1-under-par 69 and win the British Open by three shots over Matt Kuchar.By adding the claret jug to his collection, Spieth captured the third leg of the career Grand Slam and heads to the PGA Championship next month with a chance to be the youngest to win them all.The only smart option was to take a one-shot penalty for an unplayable lie.[...] that’s when Spieth showed his golfing brain is as valuable as any club in his bag.Spieth hit 6-iron to the 14th that landed in front of the flag and came within inches of an ace, leading to a short birdie putt to regain a share of the lead.On the par-5 15th, he rolled in a 50-foot eagle putt and playfully barked at caddie Michael Greller to pick it out of the cup.Spieth rolled in a 30-foot putt across the 16th green for a two-shot lead, and he kept that margin by pouring in a 7-foot putt to match birdies with Kuchar.The final putt for par was a tap-in.“To follow that bogey on 13 with great golf shots and great putts, and play the final five holes in 5-under par, I was just very happy for him and very impressed to watch all that guts, determination and skill,” Jack Nicklaus posted on Facebook.“This is a dream come true for me,” Spieth said, gazing at his name on the silver claret jug.Just 15 months ago, Spieth lost a five-shot lead on the back nine at the Masters, coming undone with a quadruple-bogey 7 on the 12th hole.Spieth won for the third time this year, moved to No. 2 in the world and already has 11 victories on the PGA Tour.Kuchar, playing in the final group of a major for the first time, could only watch.[...] it’s an excitement and a thrill to have played well, put up a battle, put up a fight, said Kuchar, who shot 69.Became the only player in the 10 British Opens held at Royal Birkdale to shoot four rounds in 60s.Will go for a career Grand Slam at next month’s PGA Championship at Quail Hollow.
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AROUND THE WEB
- Jordan Spieth’s wild journey to British Open title
By Doug Ferguson - Sunday Jul 23, 2017
- Kevin Kisner avoids bad end to take third-round lead at PGA Championship
By Doug Ferguson - Saturday Aug 12, 2017
Kevin Kisner avoids bad end to take third-round lead at PGA ChampionshipCHARLOTTE, N.C. — Kevin Kisner survived a calamitous finish at the PGA Championship thanks to a good bounce off a bridge that allowed him to escape with a bogey and take a one-shot lead into the final round at Quail Hollow.Kisner already gave up a two-shot lead Saturday with a shot into the water on the 16th hole.Chris Stroud, the last player to qualify for the PGA Championship with a playoff victory last week in Nevada, three-putted for bogey on his final two holes for a 71 and will play in the final group with Kisner.[...] one shot behind was Hideki Matsuyama, who had a 73.Jason Day was right there with them until a peculiar decision likely cost him a reasonable chance.Stuck behind a tree right of the 18th fairway, Day chose not to pitch out to the fairway and tried hooking it around the tree and the gallery to the right.The club clanged off the pine and the ball went into the bushes.Day was seven shots behind.Rickie Fowler was three shots off the lead until a three-putt bogey on the 16th hole.Through all that chaos, Matsuyama kept alive his chances to bring Japan in its first major.Matsuyama made his share of mistakes, and while he failed to convert two good birdie chances, he played the last five holes bogey-free for a 73.Kisner was at 7-under 206 as he goes after his first major championship.Of the 15 players who remained under par, Louis Oosthuizen is the only one who has won a major, and that was seven years ago.Oosthuizen saved par from a similar spot Day was in on the 18th hole and shot 71.Canadian Graham Delaet made an unexpected run up the leaderboard after playing the four-hole stretch from No 13 through 16 in 6 under par, highlighted by back-to-back eagles on No. 14 and 15.The hot spell left DeLaet 2 under par for the tournament.DeLaet, who has never won a professional tournament on American soil, nearly had a hole-in-one on the par-4 14th hole, driving the ball eight feet past the hole.On the par-5 15th hole, he put his approach shot to within 12 feet.Tony Finau almost had the second hole-in-one of the PGA Championship.Finau took aim at the flagstick with his pitching wedge on the 167-yard, par-3 fourth hole during the third round.Eagles are landing:Marc Leishman chipped in from 85 feet from the back of the green for an eagle on the par 5 10th hole.The other player in the threesome Jason Dufner must have felt a little embarrassed — he only managed a par.Doug Ferguson is an Associated Press writer.LeaderboardPlayerRory McIlroy
- Charley Hoffman take 1-shot lead in RBC Canadian Open
By Associated Press - Sunday Jul 30, 2017
Charley Hoffman birdied the final hole for a 7-under-par 65 on Saturday at Glen Abbey to take a one-stroke lead into the final round of the Canadian Open in Oakville, Ontario. Hoffman, 40, had six birdies in a seven-hole stretch that ended on No. 15, bogeyed the par-4 17th and rebounded with the two-putt birdie on the par-5 18th. “When you’re playing good, I always say golf is fairly easy,” Hoffman said. “It’s been a fun run the last month or two months; actually all year, and it’s not very stressful, which is good. When you’re trying to make cuts, that’s when golf is hard. ... Have my family out for the next five weeks. They are off for summer break.
- Phil Mickelson shoots a 79, his worst PGA Championship round ever
By Associated Press - Thursday Aug 10, 2017
Phil Mickelson shoots a 79, his worst PGA Championship round everCHARLOTTE, N.C. — Phil Mickelson has never had a round this bad at a PGA Championship.Mickelson shot an 8-over-par 79 on Thursday — the worst round of his 25 appearances at the final major of the season — with eight bogeys.John Daly went from contender to curmudgeon after a triple bogey on the 18th hole capped an eventful 24-hour period that included singing a Prince song onstage with Darius Rucker.Daly tweeted videos taken Wednesday night of himself joining the Hootie & the Blowfish frontman-turned-country soloist to sing “Purple Rain” and other songs.
- Curry makes turn in 2-over-par 37 at Stonebrae
By Ron Kroichick - Thursday Aug 3, 2017
Stephen Curry’s inaugural appearance in a PGA Tour-sanctioned event did not begin auspiciously:Curry, playing on a sponsor exemption in the Web.com Tour’s Ellie Mae Classic in Hayward, started his round on No. 10 and made three bogeys in his first five holes.Another highlight came on No. 18, where Curry’s tee shot found a fairway bunker.Curry’s presence brought a much larger-than-usual crowd to TPC Stonebrae.Many wore Warriors jerseys, including one young fan who also sported a chef’s hat (i.e. Chef Curry).
- This was a horrible way to start the British Open
By Mark Cannizzaro - Thursday Jul 20, 2017
SOUTHPORT, England — Mark O’Meara, the 1998 British Open winner at Birkdale, struck the first shot of the tournament with his 6:35 a.m. tee time Thursday. And then he proceeded to take 80 more shots from there, finishing with an 11-over-par 81. His nightmarish day began with a quadruple-bogey 8 on the first hole, where...