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Dublin: 10 °C Thursday 23 May, 2019


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Final playoff leaderboard

  • Zach Johnson -1
  • Louis Oosthuizen Par
  • Marc Leishman +2

Final leaderboard

  • Zach Johnson -15 (66) – PLAYOFF
  • Marc Leishman -15 (66) - PLAYOFF
  • Louis Oosthuizen – 15 (69) - PLAYOFF
  • Jordan Spieth -14 (69)
  • Jason Day -14 (70)
  • Jordan Niebrugge (a) -11 (70)
  • Padraig Harrington -7 (75)
  • Paul Dunne (a) -6 (78)


Well, are you all ready for this?

Good afternoon all and welcome to The42′s live coverage of the fourth and final round of the 144th Open championship.

It’s set to be an historic day for Irish golf with 22-year-old amateur Paul Dunne currently in a tie for the lead and Pádraig Harrington, chasing his fourth Major, two shots further back.

There’s a host of players firmly in contention and we’re in for a dramatic afternoon of golf at St Andrews. We’re going to be here for all of it and guide you through all the twists and turns as they happen.

Let’s do this.

The Old Course at St Andrews has seen its fair share of iconic moments down the years but could Paul Dunne etch his name into golfing folklore this afternoon?

An amateur hasn’t won the Open since 1930 but the 22-year-old from Greystones is sitting pretty at the top of the leaderboard after three scintillating rounds.

South African Louis Oosthuizen and Jason Day are also twelve-under par with Jordan Spieth a further shot behind.

Harrington carded a flawless 65 on Sunday to propel himself into contention and he’ll fancy his chance of winning a third Claret Jug. He’s in a tie for fifth, two shots off the summit, and tees-off at 2.10pm.

Play got underway at 7.45am this morning and the big mover is amateur Oliver Schniederjans. He’s six-under par for the day and now just two shots off the lead.

Graeme McDowell is also going well on six-under par but has left it too late to make a real surge up the leaderboard.

By all accounts, conditions are conducive to low scoring again but if the forecast is correct, rain clouds are set to converge on St Andrews this afternoon.

Here’s the current state of play. As you can see, Schniederjans and Englishman Andy Sullivan are the big movers with the leaders yet to begin their final round.

leaderboard Source: TheOpen

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More of the same today, please.

It’s worth noting the start times for the rest of the field as we reach the business end of proceedings.

  • 1pm: Patrick Reed and Ryan Palmer
  • 1.10pm: Rickie Fowler and Steven Bowditch
  • 1.20pm: Charl Schwartzel and Eddie Pepperell
  • 1.30pm: Danny Willett and Zach Johnson
  • 1.40pm: Adam Scott and Robert Streb
  • 1.50pm: Retief Goosen and Justin Rose
  • 2pm: Sergio Garcia and Jordan Niebrugge (a)
  • 2.10pm: Marc Leishman and Pádraig Harrington
  • 2.20pm: Jordan Spieth and Jason Day
  • 2.30pm: Louis Oosthuizen and Paul Dunne (a)

A lot has been made of the decision by the BBC to keep their schedule as it was and not show extended coverage of the Open. Until Hazel Irvine graces our screens at 1.45pm, here’s some reading material to whet the appetite.

Just like he did yesterday, Graeme McDowell has dropped shots on the home stretch to fall back to four-under par.

Golf - The Open Championship 2015 - Day Five - St Andrews Source: PA Wire/Press Association Images

The stage is set but who will be lifting that coveted Claret Jug come 7pm this evening?

Poll Results:

Paul Dunne (124)
Pádraig Harrington (115)
Jordan Spieth (97)
Louis Oosthuizen (63)
Other (53)
Jason Day (37)

Phil is on the charge!

It wouldn’t be the final day of a Major without an appearance from Phil Mickelson. The American left-hander is charging up the leaderboard after five birdies today and is now just three off the lead with four holes of his final round to play.

Golf - The Open Championship 2015 - Day Two - St Andrews Source: EMPICS Sport

As we all known, Dunne is ineligible to pocket any of the €1.6 million prize money if he was to win at St Andrews because of a longstanding rule.

However, if the former Blackrock College student was to fend off the rest of the field, a couple of punters would bag a tidy winning after putting a tenner on Dunne at 750/1 last week.

A Paddy Power spokesperson told The42:

“It’s only the last  24 hours that we’ve seen money for Dunne, he was a massive winner in our book yesterday afternoon, but that number has already been cut in half and we expect he’ll continue to be popular up until tee time,” a Paddy Power spokesperson said.

“As always, the week started with patriotic punters lumping on Shane Lowry, while Rickie Fowler was massively popular following his victory at the Scottish Open.

“Now with a round to go and the leader board so bunched it looks  wide open… we’re seeing a decent spread of money on the leading contenders but it looks like Spieth (just) is the one punters fancy most.”

Is this a sign of nerves from the man seeking a third straight Major?

With tickets just £10 for the day, the stands and fairways are already crammed at St Andrews with thousands flocking to the Old Course to witness one of the most exciting finishes at the Open for some time.

Dunne had considerable support yesterday but there should be even more Irish following the young golfer around today with friends and family using every means possible to get over to Scotland in time.

On that note, it’s not long now. Less than an hour until Harrington takes his place on the first tee.

The unmistakable voice of Ivor Robson will set the players off and it will be the veteran announcer’s last day on the job as he hangs up the microphone after 41 years at the Open.

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It goes from bad to worse for Dustin Johnson as he follows his birdie on the opening hole with three consecutive bogeys. The leader at the halfway point has had a nightmare over the last 24 hours and is now way back on five-under par.

Out of bounds!

Phil Mickelson’s hopes of posting a competitive score looks to have disappeared on the 17th. The American’s tee-shot goes straight right and eventually comes to rest on the hotel balcony. He’s looking to limit the damage but that was a setback he can ill afford at this stage.

Jordan Spieth has finished his lunch and is on the range as he looks to become the first player since 2002 to win three straight Majors. The Texan’s form has been imperious and it’s very difficult to look past the 21-year-old, particularly after the composure he showed to win the US Open last month.

Mickelson ends up carding a triple-bogey seven on the 17th to fall back to seven-under par. That’s surely the end of Phil’s challenge.

BBC’s coverage is just minutes away from starting and we’ve just seen pictures of Paul Dunne warming-up on the range. A penny for his thoughts right now.

The umbrellas are beginning to pop-up as the rain returns at St Andrews.

Golf - The Open Championship 2015 - Day Five - St Andrews Source: PA Wire/Press Association Images

Not long now until Harrington begins his quest for a third Open win. He’s just been speaking to the BBC on the range and admits he’s confident going into the round but says ‘there is a lot of hard work still to do’.

Scott moves to within two

Adam Scott has been one of the most consistent players on the tour in the last few years and he’s up there again. The Australian has just birdied the opening hole and he’s now within two of the lead.

Justin Rose and Retief Goosen are the latest group to tee-off with both on nine-under par. There’s no 42 players within five of Dunne and the co-leaders.

The Paul Dunne fan club is growing. He now has Harry Redknapp’s backing.


Donald sinks one on 15 to move to ten-under par and he’s still got a couple of holes to go. His fellow Englishman Lee Westwood has just signed for a 71 to finish on four-under par while Rose misses a birdie putt on the first.

Interesting line there from Mark James on BBC. If Dunne wins, his prize money will be distributed among all the other professionals rather than just the player who comes second.

Schniederjans has finished with a birdie and is in the clubhouse at nine-under par. It’s unlikely to be enough unless the weather takes a severe turn in the afternoon but a fine effort from the amateur.

The penultimate group – Day and Spieth – are finalising their preparations on the putting green. We’re nearly there, folks.

Lovely putt from Garcia as he rolls in a birdie on the first to take his place on ten-under par. The leaderboard is becoming increasingly congested now as Harrington arrives on the first tee.

Fairway wood off the tee for Harrington and he splits the fairway as the drizzle gets that bit heavier. Great reception for the Irishman as he makes his way down the first fairway alongside Marc Leishman.

Harrington puts his second at the first hole to within 10 foot and he now has the chance to start his round off in the best possible fashion. He looks relaxed, smiling and waving to the galleries, as he makes his way across the bridge to the putting surface.

That really was a delicious wedge shot from Harrington and would have eased any nerves he had. Leishman sinks his birdie putt to move to ten-under and now it’s Harrington.

Birdie for Harrington!

Harrington holes the putt and he starts with a three to move to one behind the leaders!

Back on the tee, Spieth fires one down the middle and Jason Day follows suit. Just Dunne and Oosthuizen yet to start.

As was forecast, it’s chucking it down now and it will be interesting to see if the rain effects the scoring. It’s been another birdie blitz so far.

Incredible stuff as Chesters cards another birdie to move to eleven-under par alongside Anthony Wall, Harrington and Spieth. Conditions are deteriorating, and fast, as the wind begins to pick-up too.

130 yards for Day but he doesn’t get enough spin and he’s left himself with a long putt while Spieth puts his second to within a couple of yards.

The fairway is clear for Paul Dunne to begin the biggest round of his fledgling career.

Ivor Robson welcomes the final pairing to the tee on what’s his last day in the job after 41 years.

‘This is the final game of the 144th Open championship.’ Oosthuizen has the honour.

The South African takes an iron off the tee and sends one down the middle.

Huge cheer for Paul Dunne from the galleries around the first tee. He drags it slightly left but it’s safe and that’s the hardest part out of the way.

Birdie for Harrington!

Harrington sinks a long, swinging birdie putt on the first to move into a tie for the lead. Great putt from the Dubliner and he looks in the zone this afternoon.

Nerves from Dunne as he gets his second to the first heavy and very nearly trickles into the stream on-front of the green. That was lucky and a wry smile from Dunne.

Dunne plays a solid chip over Swilcarn Burn and he needed that just to settle after a nervous start. He’ll have a tricky par putt back down towards the hole as Oosthuizen sinks his birdie putt.

Bogey for Dunne!

Not the start he wanted as his par attempt slips away to the right. Bogey five and Dunne falls one behind.

Beautifully judged putt on the second from Spieth as he taps in for his par. Harrington, meanwhile, is motoring as his second at the third pitches just past the hole and spins back.

Day has braved the elements and taken off the rain gear before finishing with a four on the second.

Golf - The Open Championship 2015 - Day Five - St Andrews Source: PA Wire/Press Association Images

So close!

Harrington comes within inches of three straight birdies but it’s an exceptional start for the three-time Major winner.

Disaster for Dunne!

Dunne takes three off the tee and is in big trouble on the second. His first drive was headed for the gorse bushes and his second followed towards the danger. No idea where his third is. Disaster.

He’s found his first and it’s so far right that it landed on a practice putting surface. He gets free relief but is miles from where he’s meant to be.

Another massive break for Dunne here but he’s still a lot of work to do to escape with a par. It’s taking an age with the referee intervening and then the galleries have to be moved as Dunne and his caddy attempt to find a way out.

After all that, Dunne gets a clean connection and ends up about 30 yards short of the putting surface. Not a bad outcome after his tee-shot but he needs an up and down to avoid back-to-back bogeys.

Elsewhere, Leishman continues his march with a birdie on the third. Beautifully judged putt and it drops for the Australian who moves to eleven-under par.

Dunne taking his time over every shot and plays a nice approach into the third to leave himself with a 10 foot putt down the hill for a par. Considering he was looking at a nine or ten on this hole, he might just escape relatively unharmed.

With all the attention on Dunne as he scraps for par, Oosthuizen is going about his business in typically understated fashion. The South African is out on his own on thirteen-under par.

Bogey for Dunne!

More groans as Dunne cards another bogey and his nerves are getting the better of him so far. It wasn’t a bad putt but it just lacked the pace on the right line before running across the face of the hole.

Good afternoon. Steve O’Rourke here taking over from Ryan Bailey who guided you through the early morning action. You can blame him for Paul Dunne’s bad start I suppose if you really must blame someone.

The Irish amateur with a much better tee-shot on the third, hopefully that’ll settle the nerves.

Meanwhile, Adam Scott moves to -12 too.

Birdie for Dunne!

That’s a hell of a lot better from Dunne as he drops his second at the third hole just over the pin before nailing a 10 foot putt for birdie. He’s back to -11 and two off the leaders.

Oosthuizen was also on the green but his aggressive putt catches the lip and drifts four foot past.

Zach Johnson and Louis Oosthuizen are our leaders at the moment, the American currently four under through seven holes.

This already has playoff written all over it.

More leaders!

Adam Scott and his broomstick are now -13 too. I hope nobody has a fear of crowded spaces.

Birdie for Harrington!

Make that five names at the top with Harrington and playing partner Marc Leishman joining the rest.

He loves the rain does Padraig

Source: PA Wire/Press Association Images

Trouble for Harrington, Johnson grabs the lead

The three time major winner is having to hit a provisional on the sixth after finding the gorse down the right.

If  you’re wondering where Leishman came from by the way, he came from miles back:

Zach Johnson is our new leader at -14 after nine holes.

Harrington is playing his fourth after they failed to find his original tee-shot on the sixth

Anthony Wall is into the top five. Fair to say he’s a Major novice:

Scott’s putter is on fire

Another birdie for Scott and he briefly joins Zach Johnson at -14 before the American birdies to move to -15.

The news is not so good for Harrington who double bogeys the sixth and falls back to -11 alongside Paul Dunne.

Birdie for Dunne!

He had to step away from a it  a couple of times because of the wind but Dunne is back to where he started on -12 with his second birdie of the day. Hopefully his travails of the first couple of holes are behind him now.

In the race for the Silver Medal, Dunne is now tied with Niebrugge at -12.

Great Scott

With his sixth birdie of the day, Adam Scott rejoins Johnson at the top of the leaderboard. He’s hit ever green in regulation today.

There are no fewer than nine players within three shots of the lead now. Dunne has another chance of a birdie on the sixth, as does Oosthuizen who nails his to move one behind the leaders.

Dunne’s effort looked in all the way but slid just right at the end.

Zach Attack

It’s looking like Zach Johnson’s open as he moves to -16 total, -7 for the day.

Seven birdies in just 12 holes is phenomenal scoring. One of us in the office — HINT: it’s me — is feeling pretty smug after tipping him on the radio on Friday.

Source: lastair Grant/AP/Press Association Images

Oh and remember Mark James called Paul Dunne British? He apologised today… kind of:

“I called him British yesterday and someone took exception – he’s Irish. But we like to be inclusive on the BBC”

Dunne is playing well but not well enough at the moment. He misses another birdie opportunity and stays at -12.

Our leader Johnson is in trouble on 13 though.

Unlucky for some

Zach Johnson is human and the American drops his first shot of the day on the 13th to slip back to -15 where he’s tied with Adam Scott.

Double trouble

Speaking of human. Jordan Spieth’s hopes of a third Major on the trot look in real through after a double bogey following a four-putt on the 8th.

Paul Dunne is finding the greens now, giving himself chances but he really needs to start taking them if he wants to win the Open.

He has a 15-20 footer on the ninth to make the turn in 35.

For those wondering, Padraig Harrington his still 10-under playing the 11th.

Zach Johnson and Adam Scott are still our leaders on -15 but there’s a bit of a late charge coming from England’s Danny Willet who has birdied four in a row from 11 to sit three behind the lead on -12.

Back-to-back birdies from Spieth and he makes amends for that double bogey.

Here’s the wild putt that cost him that double.

Harrington moves to -11 with a birdie. He’s not out of this just yet.

We have a new leader

The relatively unheralded Marc Leishman is our new leader on -16 following a birdie on the 11th. Since a bogey on the 17th on Friday/Saturday, the Australian has recorded 16 birdies with no dropped shots and he leads the Open as a result.

Two shot swing for his fellow Aussie Adam Scott who drops one to return to -14.

Bogey for Dunne

That may be that for Paul Dunne as he drops a shot on the 10th. It doesn’t look like it’ll be the Wicklow man’s day.

Leishman almost makes it another birdie but he settles for a tap-in par on the difficult 13th to maintain his one shot lead.

Great Scott (Part II):

Adam Scott makes it two dropped shots in a row after a three putt missing a tap in

Paul Dunne pulls a birdie back so he’s on level par for his round, -12 for the day.

Dunne and dusted?

It’s not looking good for Paul Dunne in the race for the Silver Medal either as he’s left himself a 60-footer on the 11th while fellow amateur Jordan Niebrugge birdies the 14th and moves to -13.

There were no such issues for Oosthuizen on the 11th, sinking a six footer to get to -15 and one off the lead.

Having already won an Open at this venue, is he the likeliest winner?

Padraig Harrigton is still -11 through 13 holes.

They’re all falling away now.

After a slip on his second shot, Zach Johnson can’t save par and he drops back to -14 alongside Jason Day and Jordan Spieth, two behind our leader.

Like buses, that’s a bogey each for Harrington and Dunne as they both drop back to -10.

We won’t have an Irish winner of the Open barring the most dramatic of finishes but with such a compact leaderboard, we’re in for an exciting hour or so.

Swings and roundabouts 

A dropped shot from Oosthuizen means he’s now two behind and, all of a sudden, Leishman has a bit of daylight behind him.

Hold on though, Zach Johnson is our new clubhouse leader on -15 after a 30-foot birdie putt on the last to card a 66.

If you’re wondering about a playoff, here’s how it would work

Leishman made a brilliant putt for pra on the 15th, the Australian is in trouble on the 16th.

Here’s another look at Zach Johnson’s putt:

Paul Dunne’s challenge is over as he’s slipped back to -8 while Harrington has managed just the second birdie of the day at 16 to go back to -10. Dunne is one of just two players in the top twenty to shoot over par today.

Leishman  was in trouble all the way up the 16th but looked to have made amends with a great bunker shot to set up a par putt. He’s missed though and slips back to -15, tied with Zach Johnson.

Who knows how many players could make this playoff with Lieshman on -15 on the course and three players — Oosthuizen, Day and Spieth — on -14.

Stick that kettle on, we could be here a while.

The Spieth of him

Leishman will go to the 18th knowing a birdie will give him the outright clubhouse lead after a brilliant two putt on 17.

However, Jordan Spieth has joined him on -15 with huge birdie putt on 16.

Spieth’s putt on 16. Shades of Tiger…


Leishman misses his birdie putt on 18 and he joins Zach Johnson on 66 for the round and -15 for the tournament.

A 6,5,3,6,5 finish for Padraig Harringon sees the three-time Major winner finish on -7.

Spieth has a birdie putt on the 17th to take the outright lead.

History beckons…

And Spieth drops a shot on 17 to go back to -14. He’ll need a birdie on the last to make a playoff.

Spieth’s drive on the 18th is wild, but it’s wild left so he’s not in any trouble at all.

He still needs to stick his second shot close to make the playoffs, as does playing partner Jason Day.

Spieth can’t keep his approach on the green and he’s going to need a miracle to make the playoffs. Jason Day has a 20-foot downhill putt to join Leishman and Johnson.

MASSIVE par for Oosthuizen on 17 and he knows a birdie on 18 will put him in the playoffs.

Spieth has missed his birdie putt on the 18th so he won’t be adding a third Major to his trophy haul this season. Jason Day also misses — somehow leaving it short — so only Oosthuizen has a chance of making it three in the playoffs.

It’s a disappointing finish for Irish amateur Paul Dunne as closes with a bogey five on 18 to sign off on a 78 to bring his total to -6, six shots down on where he started the day.

Still, the 22-year old can take a lot of heart from his performance this week and we’re sure we’ll see mor eof him in the coming years.

And Oosthuizen makes the putt and we have a three-way playoff featuring the South African, Zach Johnson and Marc Leishman.

It will be best aggregate score over four holes — 1st, 2nd, 17th and 18th — before going to sudden death if needed.

The playoff is under way but, for what it’s worth, Jordan Niebrugge won the Silver Medal for the week’s best amateur.

Oosthuizen is first to play in and he lands his approach 15-18 feet from the pin.

Leishman is having to play out of a little divot and it flies a bit on the Australian. He’ll still have a tricky tow-putter for par.

Johnson’s shot is the best of the three, just hopping over the burn and landing in line with the flag.

Leishman is tentative with his putt, leaving it three foot short, but he should still make a par.

First blood to Oosthuizen as he nails his putt to go -1 in the playoff.

And Johnson follows him straight in.

Leishman looks out of it now after a bogey on the first playoff hole. Still four holes to make it up but it won’t be easy against this pair.

Andy Lee will defend Paul Dunne to the last:

All three hit wonderful drives down the right of the second giving them the best angle to approach the green.

Johnson is first to play into the second after taking an age over the shot. He lands it about 25 feet past the pin.

Oosthuizen  goes next and lands about the same distance from the pin but more in line than Johnsons.

Leishman has to try get inside the pair but comes up short. All three will be happy enough with pars after this.

Fantastic effort from Leishman comes up just short and he taps in for par.

Oosthuizen’s drifts just left at the death when it looked all the world a birdie.

Advantage Johnson, he makes it back-t0-back birdies and takes the lead.

The players have moved on to the 17th and, perhaps, penultimate hole of this year’s Open Championship. All three will be happy with their drives.

With the wind almost disappearing, Leishman is first to play into the 17th green but his shot roles off the front, probably just a yard short.

Johnson is the next to play and, instead of playing safe, his shot drifts left and he’ll have the bunker to contend with on his third.

Oosthuizen plays safe and will hope a two-putt will be enough to draw level with the American.

Johnson catches it heavy and will have to pitch from the other side of the green in the hope of a par.

Leishman is next to go but his putt is a long way, maybe eight feet, short and it’ll be a tricky par when the Australian really needs birdies.

Oosthuizen’s putt is better but he’ll still have a knee-knocker for par. Johnson getting out of jail here.

Johnson nearly chips in for par but he’ll have a four footer for bogey.

Leishman misses his par putt and he’s going to need a miracle now to come back from +2.

Oosthuizen three putts and he’ll trail by one going down the last if Johnson makes his.

Johnson’s drive in bang down the centre but Oosthuizen’s — chasing a birdie — is huge.

Leishman will have to hole his second to stand any chance.

Johnson’s shot spins back within 15 feet and, unless Oosthuizen can make a birdie, he looks like he’ll be crowned Open champion for 2015.

A really good effort from Oosthuizen as he pitches to inside 10 feet.

This one’s not over just yet folks.

And that’s it from me. Thanks for joining Ryan and I today. We’ll leave you with this final statistic:

About the author:

Steve O'Rourke