Cameron Smith produced a stunning final round at the Old Course to win the 150th Open Championship over Cameron Young. The Aussie shot 8-under 64 to win the championship by just a single stroke over the American, Young.
Third-round leader Rory McIlroy failed with the putter on the final day losing his four-stroke lead to finish third, ahead of Tommy Fleetwood and Viktor Hovland who finished tied for fourth.
Trailing the leaders, Smith closed with a back-nine 30 to match the tournament scoring record at 20-under. His total also bettered the previous lowest winning score in an Open at St. Andrews, which belonged to Tiger Woods who set the record at 19-under in 2000.
Cameron Smith, who led after day two, joined Jack Nicklaus as the only men to claim the Players Championship and The Open in the same year after his latest win. This is the 28-year-old’s first career major win and sixth on the PGA Tour.
The Australian’s win was aided by eight birdies in a bogey-free round that included an extraordinary stretch of five straight birdies to start his back nine.
Smith’s impressive win has been soured by reports that he is set to join LIV Golf in the coming days in what will be another blow to the PGA Tour.
Meanwhile, the 54-hole leader Hovland made just one birdie in the final round en route to a 2-over 74 while McIlroy fared marginally better, with two birdies but 16 pars.
It is the first instance in the history of golf that a player under 30 has won all four majors in a season. The other three majors of the men’s season were won by Scottie Scheffler at the Masters, Justin Thomas at the PGA Championship, and, most recently, Matt Fitzpatrick at the US Open.
The next golf major will be the Masters Tournament in April 2023, while the Open Championship heads to Royal Liverpool in July 2023.