Battling the weather and the field, Connor Syme punched his ticket to Royal Birkdale
(Bunkered Golf photo)
VARIOUS SITES IN ENGLAND AND SCOTLAND (July 4, 2017) - Final Qualifying for the 2017 British Open at Royal Birkdale was held at five sites Tuesday (four in England and one in Scotland). There were 72 players and three spots available at each qualifying site, with 36 holes determining who would make the starting field of golf's third major of the season, and golf's oldest major championship.
Related: British Open Final Qualifying Preview
A total of 360 players--282 professionals and 78 amateurs--competed for the 15 available spots in the 146th Open Championship.
The most noteworthy professional to advance through final Qualifying was Ian Poulter of England, who was the runner-up in the Championship when it was last held at Royal Birkdale in 2008.
In a day of near-misses for amateurs, only Scotland's Connor Syme
punched his ticket to Royal Birkdale.
Highlights from British Open Final Qualifying include:
Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club, Deal, England
Qualifiers: 72, Amateurs: 16
On a day where only six players bested par, World #16 David Boote
of England shot 71-70 for a one-under 141 total. But he was not able to survive a 4-for-1 playoff for the final spot as Canadian professional Austin Connelly came out the winner.
Last year's British Amateur champion Scott Gregory
of England, who as a result of his victory played in this year's Masters and U.S. Open, finished one shot out of the playoff after rounds of 71-71.
Also one shot from the playoff were Spain's Xabier Gorospe
(73-69) and England's Harry Hall
of Germany, currently #8 in the AmateurGolf.com Mid-Amateur Rankings
, shot 72-71 to miss the playoff by two.
One of only two Americans in Final Qualifying, Graysen Huff
of Eagle, ID, shot 78-72.
Woburn Golf Club, Milton Keynes, England
Qualifiers: 72, Amateurs: 16
World #29 Viktor Hovland
of Norway (72-67) made a furious charge to claim the final qualifying spot, making three late birdies to get to five under but he ultimately fell one shot short of Ian Poulter.
World #13 Jack Singh Brar
of England (72-68) also made a run, going out in four under on the front nine of his afternoon round, but he could only manage nine pars coming home and fell two shots short.
The other American amateur in Final Qualifying, World #52 Dylan Wu
of Medford, OR started strong with a 68 but faded in the afternoon to a 77.
Notts Golf Club, Kirkby in Ashfield, England
Qualifiers: 72, Amateurs: 17
Two amateurs had golden opportunities to make it to Royal Birkdale, only to fall short in a playoff for the last spot.
of Italy shot 68-69 and Rhys Nevin-Wharton
of England shot 67-70 to finish at seven under and get into a 3-for-1 playoff with English professional Laurie Canter. But both came up short as Canter prevailed in the playoff.
Hillside Golf Club, Southport, England
Qualifiers: 72, Amateurs: 14
This was the weakest of the amateur contingents competing on Tuesday, with no one finishing within five shots of the final qualifying spot.
Gailes Links, Irvine, Scotland
Qualifiers: 72, Amateurs: 15
Gailes was the site of the lone amateur to advance to Royal Birkdale, as Scotland's Connor Syme
shot 71-67 for a four-under 138 total to share medalist honors with American professional Julian Suri. Scoring was difficult, with only six players breaking par in a day marred by torrential rains, but Syme had a bogey-free afternoon round that included an eagle and two birdies.
Syme, who moved up to #22 in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com World Amateur Ranking
after the qualifier, was last year's Australian Amateur champion and was close to making the British Open in 2014 when he finished as a semifinalist in the British Amateur.
In the video below, Syme tells Bunkered Golf
what it will mean to him to tee it up at Royal Birkdale.
World #21 Matthew Jordan
, who won the St. Andrews Links Trophy last month, shot 73-70 and was three shots behind the final qualifying score.
World #38 Robert MacIntyre
of Scotland, who was the runner-up in the British Amateur last year, shot 73-71, four shots away from the number.
Amateurs Already Exempt
The 146th British Open Championship will be held at Royal Birkdale from July 20-23.
Amateurs already exempt for the championship include the current British Amateur champion Harry Ellis
of England, the current European Amateur champion Alfie Plant
of England as well as last year's champion Luca Cianchetti
of Italy, the winner of the Mark H. McCormick Medal as top ranked amateur of 2016 Maverick McNealy
of Portola Valley, CA.