British Open Golf 2013 Results 

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The 2013 British Open Championship, commonly referred to as “The Open,” took place on 18~21 July at Muirfield Golf Links, a renowned Scottish course just outside Edinburgh. The event is one of the four “majors” on the annual tour of the Professional Golf Association (PGA), the others being the Masters in April, the U.S. Open in June and the PGA Championship in August.

This year’s event marked the 142nd edition of the famed tournament. It kicked off with three-time Open Champion Tiger Woods atop the PGA rankings and looking for his first major victory since 2008. Also expected to be in the hunt were the 2012 Open winner, South African Ernie Els, and that year’s runner-up, Australian Adam Scott, who had recently won the 2013 Masters. Another anticipated contender was England’s own Justin Rose, winner of June’s U.S. Open.

The first round on Thursday saw 156 starters take to the 7,192-yard, par-71 course in hopes of capturing a share of the £5,250,000 total prize fund. Jumping out to an early lead by shooting a 5-under 66 was American Zach Johnson, who had just narrowly missed defending his 2012 John Deere Classic title just a week earlier. Right behind him at 4-under 67 was another American, Mark O’Meara, along with Spain’s Rafael Cabrera-Bello, winner of the 2012 Omega Dubai Desert Classic.

Five players ended the round tied in fourth position with scores of 3-under 68, including Miguel Ángel Jiménez of Spain, Shiv Kapur of India, and three more Americans: Tom Lehman, Dustin Johnson and Brandt Snedeker. Right behind them at 2-under 69 were six players, with Italy’s Francesco Molinari and Argentina’s Ángel Cabrera among them, plus Todd Hamilton and Jordan Spieth, both of the U.S.A.

Tiger Woods opened with a bogey but managed to fight back to 2-under for his own 69, and the winner of the previous week’s Scottish Open, American Phil Mickelson, ended with a bogey to tie him. That put the two Americans with the other four players tied for the number nine spot on the leaderboard.

Meanwhile, Adam Scott could do no better than par play, and defending champion Ernie Els shot a 3-over 74 after carding a triple-bogey on the 16th hole. Worse still, Justin Rose could manage no better than a 4-over 75 and the world’s #2 ranked Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland carded an 8-over 79, setting them both up to miss the cut on Day Two.

By the end of the second round, the field was trimmed to 84 players within six strokes of par. Among those joining McIlroy and Rose unable to advance were England’s Sir Nick Faldo, Japan’s Hiroyuki Fujita, America’s Jim Furyk and Nick Watney, and upcoming Ryder Cup captain Tom Watson, to name just a few noteworthy casualties.

At the top of the leaderboard after Friday was Jiménez, still at 3-under, after Zach Johnson shot a 75. That dropped the early leader into a four-way tie for sixth at 1-under with Cabrera (69-72), Cabrera-Bello (67-74) and Scotland’s own Martin Laird (70-71). Four players were also tied for second spot at 2-under, namely Dustin Johnson (68-72), Tiger Woods (69-71), and two newcomers—Henrik Stenson of Sweden (70-70) and England’s Lee Westwood (72-68).

On the penultimate day of play, the big question seemed to be whether Tiger Woods could grab the lead and get in position for his 15th major win. He was paired with Westwood, the local hopeful who had never won a major title, and it made for great television as they battled shot for shot to the end a surprising day. Woods faltered with a 72 to remain in second, tied at 1-under with American Hunter Mahan (72-72-68), while the Briton shot 70 to take the sole lead at 1-under.

Adam Scott recovered to par (71-72-70) to take possession of the number four spot. Tied for fifth at 1-over-par were Stenson, Cabrera, Zach Johnson and American Ryan Moore (72-70-72). Rounding out the top ten at 2-over-par were Mickelson (69-74-72) and Molinari (69-74-72).

On Sunday, the 2013 Open was within reach of whomever was capable of overcoming the shackles of his own past performance. To claim the Claret Jug, Westwood would need to win his first major. Mahan’s best in a major was a tie for fourth in June’s U.S. Open. For Woods, it meant coming from behind, a feat he had never accomplished in major play.

Although Westwood held solidly to the lead through the first six holes, he bogeyed the 8th and then three more to finish the round with a 75 for a final score of 1-over and tied for third with Scott, who shot 72, and England’s Ian Poulter (72-71-75-67). Mahan never managed to make a charge and also carded 75 for a share of ninth with Molinari at 3-over.

Woods, meanwhile, couldn’t make the big shots he needed. The three-time Open Champ finished with a 74, putting him in a tie for sixth at 2-over with Zach Johnson and Japan’s steady Hideki Matsuyama (71-73-72-70). And although Stenson finished with a 1-under round of 70, it was only good enough for even par overall and the runner-up position.

The winner of the 2013 Open, and the only player to complete 72 holes below par, was the darkest of all dark horses, “Old Lefty” Phil Mickelson. He shot a simply brilliant 66 over the last round, including four birdies on the last six holes, to end up at 3-under—the best round of his career at just the right time.

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