American Wins British Open Defined by Double Bogey
Zach Johnson prevails on tense afternoon of shadows and showers
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 20, 2015 3:27 PM CDT
Zach Johnson celebrates with members of the public after winning a playoff after the final round at the British Open Golf Championship at the Old Course, St. Andrews, Scotland, Monday, July 20, 2015.   (Alastair Grant)
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(Newser) – Jordan Spieth's spirited bid for a Grand Slam was stopped Monday by Zach Johnson, who is no longer just a normal guy from Iowa. Not with a claret jug to go with that green jacket. Johnson captured his second major—this one at the home of golf—winning the British Open in a playoff over Louis Oosthuizen and Marc Leishman that capped off five wild days at St. Andrews and a suspense-filled final round. Most eyes were on 21-year-old Spieth. No one ever came closer to the third leg of the Grand Slam. Spieth fought back from taking four putts for a double bogey on No. 8 with back-to-back birdies. He rolled in a 50-foot birdie putt for a share of the lead with two holes to play. After missing an 8-foot par putt on the 17th hole, he needed a birdie on the closing hole to join the playoff.

But his 90-yarder was too far right and rolled to the edge of the Valley of Sin short of the green, and his birdie attempt up the slope stayed inches left of the cup. On a tense afternoon of shadows and showers on the Old Course, the 39-year-old Johnson closed with a 6-under 66 by holing a 30-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole in regulation, and caddie Damon Green strutted and flapped his arms in his celebratory chicken dance. Johnson now has two majors among his 12 PGA Tour victories, an astounding record and an example that a good wedge game and putter can still go a long way in this era of the long ball. Johnson was in tears when he was interviewed off the green, and he cradled the jug after his acceptance speech. "I'm grateful. I'm humbled. I'm honored," Johnson said. "This is the birthplace of the game, and that jug means so much in sports."
 

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