July 19, 2008

Sunday's Winners And Losers

Mike O'Malley analyzes Sunday's golf and tells you who came out a winner and who ended up a loser

SOUTHPORT, England -- Come Sunday night there's only one winner, of course, so let's award a few consolation prizes after the final round of the 137th Open:

WINNERS

Padraig Harrington

Harrington became the 16th player to successfully defend the Open Championship, the first since Tiger Woods in 2005-'06 and the first European since James Braid in 1905-'06. Can you imagine a Three-Peat Paddy at Turnberry in 2009?

Ian Poulter

Poulter's three-putt for 5 at the par-5 17th seemed crucial at the time, but he finished with a 69 and was the runner-up for his best finish in a major.

Chris Wood

Wood, just 20 years old, shot a 72 to finish T-5 and won the silver medal as the low amateur.

David Howell

Howell had the day's best round (67), helping him jump to a T-7 finish.

David Duval

Duval rebounded from Saturday's 83 with a 71, giving him a T-39 finish. That might not sound like much, but given Duval's results since winning the Open in 2001 at Royal Lytham, that's progress. This was his first major since the 2006 PGA, one of his 13 missed cuts in the 28 majors since Lytham. Duval hasn't played in eight of those 28 majors, and he has survived to the weekend in only six. So yes, T-39 is something to build on.

LOSERS

No way we're going to call Greg Norman a loser after the week he had at 53. "Yes, I am," Norman laughed to reporters after walking off the 18th green, pausing a moment to add, "Obviously I'm disappointed."

K.J. Choi

The day was a disaster for Choi, starting with his front-nine 40 and ending with a quadruple-bogey 8 at the 72nd hole finished a 79 that dropped him to T-16.

Simon Wakefield

Wakefield was five over par and in contention after nine holes before shooting 43 on the back nine, including a triple-bogey 8 at the 17th for a 79 that dropped him all the way to T-19.

Sergio Garcia

Like Big Brown in the Belmont Stakes, Garcia, the pre-tournament favorite, quit running down the stretch. After a birdie at the ninth, Garcia was nine over par for the tournament, still hanging aroundf. But he was seven over for the next five holes--bogey, bogey, bogey, double, double--before finishing with a closing bogey for a back-nine 44 and a 78. "I just went brain dead," he said. A T-51 wasn't what Sergio had in mind when the week started.