Champion Francesco Molinari hoping Open success will inspire younger generation


Compared to more recent Open finals, Sunday's round was a staggering success.

That's one to tell and show the grandkids about one day.

Francesco Molinari became Italy's first major victor with victory at Carnoustie (Richard Sellers/PA).

The German gained entry into this year's Championship by winning the Senior Open title at Royal Porthcawl last year. There was also that not so small matter of all the other golfers ahead of Tiger or tied with him to start the final day at Carnoustie. The welcome nostalgia trip was short lived, however, as a run of bum luck on the eleventh and twelfth holes cost Woods three strokes just as his playing partner, Molinari, began turning on the jets. Woods, appearing frustrated, lets out a "what are you doing?" directed at the spectator.

Tiger Woods continues to be critical to golf ratings. "Hopefully, they will get as inspired as I was then".

Justin Rose continued his fine form at Carnoustie over the weekend with a final round of 69 to go to the clubhouse as the early leader on six under. Both men missed the cut.

Matt Jones, Russell Henley and Zach Johnson were all one behind Harman, who shot a round of 66, while England's Paul Casey moved into a share of fifth place on eight under after a 67, which included six birdies and three bogeys.

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Retaining his Open title looked a distinct possibility as Spieth held a share of the lead heading into the final round, but a 76 on Sunday left him four shots adrift of eventual victor Francesco Molinari. His was the only final-round score in the 80s. Rose, presently the No. 2 in the world, continues to appear at the top of leaderboards this year consistently.

27 - Number of players who finished under par for the week, up from 2007 at Carnoustie (19) and way up from 1999 (0).

The most anxious he looked all day was sitting watching Californian Schauffele play the 17th and 18th.

"It's a good second-shot golf course", he said. Jordan Spieth was tied for the lead. The prize was the Challenge Belt, crafted from red Moroccan leather and worth £25 for the time.

At the PGA, Bevacqua created the KPMG Women's PGA Championship and inked a 15-year rights deal with NBC Sports that locked up the Ryder Cup, Senior PGA and PGA Professional Championship through 2030.

Then something unbelievable by today's standards happened: Woods teed off and started putting together a great final round, and others started falling off. Improbably, Woods found himself someplace he hadn't for quite some time.

In his trademark red shirt the 42-year-old looked in complete control as he birdied the fourth and sixth holes.