Tiger Christensen (R&A Photo)
Final Qualifying for the 2023 British Open at Royal Liverpool Golf Club was held at four sites Tuesday. There were 80 amateurs and five spots available at three qualifying sites and four available at the other, with 36 holes determining who would make the starting field of golf's oldest major championship.
West Lancashire, Liverpool, England
Tiger Christensen finished tied for fourth and led the 27 amateurs at the West Lancashire qualifier, earning a spot in the field of the 151st Open Championship.
Matt Wallace finished first at 11-under par. Matthew Jordan and Kyle Barker finished tied for second at 10-under par and Alex Fitzpatrick tied with Christensen for fourth at 9-under par. Fitzpatrick, the brother of 2022 U.S. Open champion Matt Fitzpatrick, participated in the 2019 and 2021 Walker Cup.
2023 Mid-Amateur champion Matthew McLean shot 3 under with rounds of 72-69 to finish tied for 14th. Other notable players to miss the field from this qualifier were Sergio Garcia, Graeme McDowell and Stanford star Barclay Brown.
Royal Porthcawl, Porthcawl, Wales
Laurie Canter led the qualifiers at Royal Porthcawl on an eight-under-par total of 134, four shots clear of Brandon Robinson Thompson, who will make his debut in The Open after a first round 66 set the foundation for a second place finish.
Matthew Southgate fired in a last-gasp birdie to seal the third qualifying place on two-under-par, which will see the Englishman return to the venue in which he made his Open debut in 2014. A play-off looked likely but Oliver Bekker’s double bogey at the last meant that Jazz Janewattananond and Oliver Farr secured the two remaining qualifying spots on one-under-par.
2023 Mid-Amateur runner up Hugh Foley finished tied for sixth place to lead the amateurs in the field.
Dundonald Links, Ayrshire, Scotland
Local favourite Michael Stewart led the qualifiers at Dundonald to secure his debut in The Open after carding an excellent six-under-par second round 66.
The 33-year-old, who hails from nearby Irvine and plays on the European Challenge Tour, followed up on his opening round of 71 to make a late surge through the field with four birdies in his last five holes to finish on a five-under-par total of 137, two clear of England’s Marco Penge.
The final two places were decided in a three-way play-off. Scottish-born Australian Connor McKinney secured his place with a birdie on the second play-off hole (the 11th) and Graeme Robertson holed from almost 40ft to edge out his fellow Scot Craig Ross on the fifth play-off hole (the 11th again).
Calum Scott finished tied for sixth to lead the amateurs in the field with a final score of 2-under.
Royal Cinque Ports, Deal, England
South African Martin Rohwer and Thomas Detry of Belgium each recorded rounds of 72 and 69 for a three-under-par total of 141 to claim the first two qualifying positions at Royal Cinque Ports. Rohwer, 29, will make his major championship debut in The 151st Open whilst Detry, 30, will make his third appearance.
Rohwer’s compatriots Branden Grace, who shot a record low round 62 at Royal Birkdale in 2017, and Charl Shwartzel, whose best performance in The Open came at Royal Liverpool in 2014, also qualified on two-under-par 142. Joining them is Antoine Rozner, who will play in the Championship for the second time after qualifying on the same mark with two rounds of 71.
Joe Sullivan and Daniel Hayes finished tied for seventh to lead all amateurs in the field.
ABOUT THE British Open Final Qualifying
36 hole stroke play qualifier for professionals and
amateurs held at multiple sites in England and
Scotland. Preceded by 18 hole regional qualifying
at various sites across the UK and Ireland the
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