THE OPEN, DAY FOUR: Who will be crowned Carnoustie champion?

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Open Championship winner, Francesco Molinari. (REUTERS)
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Rory McIlroy. (REUTERS)
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Justin Rose. (REUTERS)
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England's Eddie Pepperell during the final round (Action Images via Reuters/Craig Brough)
Updated 23 July 2018

THE OPEN, DAY FOUR: Who will be crowned Carnoustie champion?

FINAL ROUND: Italy's Francesco Molinari emerged from the pack on a thrilling final day at Carnoustie to win the British Open on Sunday, seeing off the challenges of reigning champion Jordan Spieth and a revived Tiger Woods to win the first major of his career.
At the age of 35, he becomes the first Italian ever to win a major, after keeping his cool in remarkable fashion when almost all around him seemed to be losing theirs on a windy afternoon.


Rory McIlroy joined Justin Rose in a tie for the clubhouse lead on the final day Open on Sunday at six under par, as Italy's Francesco Molinari set the pace on the course. Englishman Rose, who equalled the record low round in an Open at Carnoustie on Saturday with a 64, was one-over for the day before an eagle at the par-5 14th. He then birdied the last for a two-under-par round of 69. Meanwhile, McIlroy began the day as an outside contender at five-under, four shots behind overnight pacesetters Jordan Spieth, Xander Schauffele and Kevin Kisner.




The Englishman was suffering this morning due to over-exuberant celebrations on Saturday night, but a stellar performance in strong winds is likely to leave him a couple of shots short, but he was visibly pleased to be in contention, especially as he had zero expectations following a poor 71 in perfect conditions on Saturday.




THIRD ROUND: Jordan Spieth set the tone pulling driver on the 396-yard opening hole and sending it bouncing and rolling to 10 feet for eagle. Moments later, Tiger Woods sent the gallery into a frenzy with three straight birdies to get into contention at a major for the first time in five years.
On a brilliant day of golf at Carnousite, and a day of calm conditions, low scores and endless cheers, the biggest buzz on Saturday was anticipating what the final round might bring. Here's what happened on day three...


Kevin Kisner remains right in contention after a bogey-free round of 68. The leaders, he, Schauffele and Spieth, are two shots clear of fellow American, Kevin Chappell, who is seven-under after a round of 67. The chasing group behind them on five-under also includes Zach Johnson and Rory McIlroy, as well as England's Tommy Fleetwood. All to play for...



Jordan Spieth was last year's Open winner at Royal Birkdale, and he is putting up a tough defense of the Claret Jug with a storming six-under par for the day, and sits level at the top of the leaderboard with the day coming to a close along with fellow Americans Kevin Kisner and Xander Schauffele.



The in-form Italian Francesco Molinari, who edged out McIlroy in the PGA Championship at Wentworth earlier this season, has had a magnificent Saturday to move onto six-under par and currently finds himself two shots off the lead.


TIGER WOODS, 5-under

Tiger Woods rediscovered his golden touch on Saturday with six birdies in his third round moving him to within a shot of the lead of the Open. After two underwhelming even-par rounds, Woods needed something special on Saturday at Carnoustie and he found the goods, giving him a great chance on the final day of a tournament he has won three times.

CHRIS WOOD, 3-under

As the co-leaders get ready to tee off, Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner have a little more company. In mild conditions that allow for low scoring, Chris Wood has hauled himself into contention with a 5-under for the day and is at 3-under par, just three shots off the lead. Definitely one of the movers and shakers on day three of the Open.

JUSTIN ROSE, 4-under

Rose tied the lowest score ever in the Open at Carnoustie, shooting a 7-under 64 to move onto the early leaderboard on a day when scoring conditions were ideal. Rose, who needed to make an 18-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole just to make the cut a day earlier, started his round with a birdie on the first hole and finished it with birdies on both 17 and 18. He didn't make a bogey on the normally tough Carnoustie links. The round ties the low at Carnoustie shot in the final round in 2007 by Steve Stricker and Richard Green.




SECOND ROUND: Several stars started the second round with work to do, the cut mark looks like it will be at the 3-over or 2-over mark. Tiger Woods, Phil MIckelson and Jordan Spieth are all over par so need a decent round to stay for the weekend. It is wet in Scotland, for the first time in a while, here is how the big names are faring...

ZACH JOHNSON, 6-under 

The 2015 champion again showed he is to be feared on links courses as he fired a fine 4-under 67 to tak the clubhouse lead. One of the best putters around he will surely be in the mix come Sunday. "Everything is coming together to a point where I should be in contention more often," the American said. 


The Englishman came into the tournament as one of the favorites and on the evidence of this round it is not hard to see why. The course record holder (set last year) fired a brilliant 6-under 65, can he get his hands on a first Major this weekend? "We are only two days in, come Sunday I would like to be in the same spot. You put all the practice in for this and you have to go out and play golf, but it is easier said than done," he said. 

RORY MCILROY, 4-under 

Another solid round for the 2014 champion, he played within himself, but would have wlaked off the course thinking of what might have been. He gave himself plenty of birdie opportunities but is not far off the lead and will doubtless fancy his chances, especially if he can make a few more putts. "Right now I am feeling good about it," he said. 


The back-to-back US Open champion had a good day at Carnoustie. Having shot a 1-over 72 on Thursday the American went into red figures on Friday firing a 2-under 69 to lurk not too far behind the leaders. 

TIGER WOODS, level-par

The Big Beast just missed a birdie putt on 18 that would have left him in red figures. He will, however, be pleased with his day's work and do not be surprised to see him challenge the top of the leaderboard over the weekend. After the round he said: "I think it is going to be a crowded leaderboard. There are going to be a bunch of guys with a chance to's going ot be a bunched leaderboard." 


The Spanish former Masters champion will not be around at the weekend after a second-round 75 saw him finsih on 4-over. Not even a bit of luck on the 18th, when his ball was heading for the bottom of the famous Barry Burn but it hit the wall of the waterway and popped back onto the fairway. 


The American came arrived at Carnoustie as the favorite but left as the first world No. 1 not to make the cut since Luke Donald in 2011. A one-over 72 was not enough to repair the damage done by his opening 76 on Thursday. 


FIRST ROUND: That's it then, everyone has had a go at this famous old course and it is American Kevin Kisner who leads on -5 after the first day. Northern Ireland's hope Rory McIlroy sits three shots back on -2, and after a topsy-turvy round, Tiger Woods is level.

It was not such a good day for 2017 winner Jordan Spieth, who dropped four shots on the final four holes to finish +1 for the day. Here's a look at the biggest names and how they fared on day one...


He came in as a lot of people's favorite to win the Open Championship, but the American world No. 1 has had an afternoon to forget. Never finding his rhythm, he shot a five-over-par 76 and now faces a massive uphill struggle just to make the weekend. Hope for the rest of the field...


The 14-time Major winner finished off his first round with a par, and he's level par for the day too. A very neat and tidy round of 71 for the American, and he looked a more composed and in-control figure than he has done of late. His successful holes were met with raucuous cheers, might be a crowd favorite for the Claret Jug?


The American was the early leader firing a 66 in the early benign conditions. The world No.33 was not thought of as a possible winner, his best finish at an Open was tied for 54th last year. Can he stay near the top of the leaderboard until Sunday?



Looking for his first Major in four years the world No.8 started with a solid round of 69. Two-under for the tricky back nine will give him confidence heading into the second round as he goes in search of his second Claret Jug. 


The Englishman has endured a torrid time since he memorably won the Green Jacket two years ago. But a recent upturn in form continued at Carnoustie and it would not be a shock to see him up near the top of the leaderboard into the weekend.

JON RAHM, 2-under

The tempestuous Spaniard has all you need to win a Major, but is yet to get his hands on one of the top-four prizes. He made a good start in Scotland, carding a 69 in a round that featured only two birdies. He will fancy his chances of contending come Sunday evening.


Three birdies and two bogeys saw the American open up with a solid, if unspectacular round. The world No. 7 has long down well on links courses so expect him to make a challenge on Friday and Saturday in a bid to win he first Major.


It all started so well for the defending champion. He was 3-under through 11 and looking set for the clubhouse lead. But then disaster struck on the 15th where a double bogey was followed up with bogeys on 16 and 17 to leave him to card a 72.


A birdie at the last would have at least left him leaving the court with a smile, but deep down he would know that being one of the earlier starters he should have done better than an up-and-down round of 72. He is desperate to add to his one Major and he has work to do if he is to get Major No. 2 this week.


The Masters champion talked a good game coming into the tournament (when does he not?). But he was left scratching his head after a 75 left him well off the pace at Carnoustie. He never really got going after a double bogey at the second left him playing catch up, a bogey on the last summed up his day.


Blue Point focused on Al-Quoz glory after magical run at Meydan

Updated 27 min 34 sec ago

Blue Point focused on Al-Quoz glory after magical run at Meydan

  • Star sprinter proves class with easy G2 win in Dubai.
  • Charlie Appleby hopeful over Al-Quoz Sprint chances.

LONDON: Star sprinter Blue Point is on course for glory in the much-anticipated Al-Quoz Sprint on Dubai World Cup night. That is the message from Godolphin after a brilliant victory in the G2 Meydan Sprint on Thursday.
The Dubai-based stable have long held high hopes for the Shamardal horse and the five-year-old’s win confirmed that they have something special on their hands.
Blue Point took up the running from Faatinah with more than two furlongs to race and readily opened up daylight over his rivals approaching the final furlong, quickly going clear.
For Charlie Appleby the performance only went to prove that Blue Point has it in him to steal the show on Dubai World Cup night in March.
“If he brought his class, he was going to be good enough to win, but we had left a bit on him because the G1 Al-Quoz Sprint on Dubai World Cup night is our target,” the Godolphin trainer said.
“No disrespect to this race, and we were pleased to win it, but it was the right stepping stone onto the Al-Quoz.
“I was pleased to see him in the paddock, more so than a couple of days ago when it looked like he had a couple of pounds left on him. He had tightened up a bit.
“We were always confident that he was going to come forward for whatever he did. He is a five-year-old now and a professional — getting better with racing. He came alive two furlongs down and it was only a matter of William asking him to pick up and do a bit of work.”
The “Boys in Blue” always place a lot of focus on the World Cup night and a second win in the Al-Quoz sprint — Appleby saddled Jungle Cat to victory last year — is one of the aims for the famous race meeting in March.
“I am very pleased and, all being well, he should step forward for it and all roads will now lead to the Al-Quoz Sprint,” Appleby said.
“I feel that he is not overly exposed as a sprinter — we looked after him as a two-year-old and a three-year-old, while he wasn’t over-raced last year so he is entitled still to be learning.”
Added to the optimism surrounding Blue Point is the fact that William Buick feels he is coming to form at just the right time.
“It was a nice comeback opportunity for Blue Point and he did it very comfortably, doing everything right. It was lovely to see him come back like that,” the jockey said. “He has probably matured a little bit compared to 12 months ago and the biggest difference this year is that he is a G1 winner this time. He had proved himself and feels like a very confident horse — there is no question that he is a top sprinter.”
Meanwhile, Godolphin’s star G1 performers Hartnell, Best Of Days and Alizee have been entered for the world’s richest mile race, the $5 million All-Star Mile to be run at Flemington on March 16.
Head trainer James Cummings confirmed that all three horses will seek a place in the famous race.
“We think it’s great the way in which it really engages with not only the racing audience, but potentially reaching out beyond just that and bringing in a wider audience from not only Australia, but from around the world,” Cummings said. “We’re really excited to be a part of the richest mile race anywhere in the world.”