We take a look at the biggest Open comebacks after Justin Rose fires a third-round 64 to move into contention
Biggest Open Championship Comebacks
Justin Roses’ record-equalling 64 at a Carnoustie Open saw the Englishman shoot up the leaderboard, from three over overnight, to two shots off the lead on completion of his third round.
Whilst the later starters on Saturday have made fast starts, Rose, with another low one on Sunday, could yet record one of the biggest ever Open comebacks.
Biggest Comeback By A Champion, 54 holes, Paul Lawrie, 1999, Carnoustie, 10 shots
Jean Van de Velde squandered a three-shot lead on the final hole, which saw the Frenchman contest a three-man playoff with Justin Leonard and Paul Lawrie. The Scot posted a final-round 67, which was the low round of the day, but Van de Velde’s horror finish opened the door.
Lawrie birdied the last hole of the four-hole playoff to take full advantage. It completed a 10-shot comeback, the largest ever in Major Championship history.Biggest Comeback By A Champion, 36 holes, George Duncan, 1920, Royal Cinque Ports, 13 shots
Should Rose come from nine back after 36 holes, it won’t be good enough to beat Duncan’s record – not that he’d mind. Duncan shot 71-72 in his final two rounds, recovering from a pair of 80s to win by two and take the £75 first prize.Biggest Comeback By A Champion, 18 holes, Harry Vardon, 1896, Muirfield, 11 shots
Not many golf tournaments are won after posting an opening round of 83. However, Vardon followed that with a pair of 78s and no one bettered his 77 in the final round.
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Greg Norman’s Open challenge at Royal Troon in 1989 is well worth a mention, even if the Australian did come up a fraction short.
Starting the day seven shots back, Norman posted a 64 – at the time the joint lowest round in Open history – to force himself into a playoff alongside Wayne Grady and eventual winner, Mark Calcavecchia.