Here we take a look at some notable winners of the low amateur honours at The Open
Past Open Championship Silver Medal Winners
Ahead of the tournament we compiled a list of past Silver Medal winners, which is awarded to the leading amateur (that makes the cut) for the week.
Previous winners include American Frank Stranahan, who won it four times in its first five years and Sir Michael Bonallack, and more recently it has been claimed by decorated golfers such as Tiger Woods and Rory McIIroy.
Incidentally, Woods and McIlroy are the only golfers to win both the Silver Medal and Claret Jug.
Other Silver Medal winners to have subsequently gone on to secure a Major Championship include Hal Sutton (1983 USPGA Championship), Jose Maria Olazabal (1994 and 1999 Masters) and Justin Rose (2013 US Open).
Frank Stranahan – 1949 (Royal St. George’s), 1950 (Troon), 1951 (Royal Portrush) and 1953 (Carnoustie)
In an amateur career that spanned from 1936-1954 the American Frank Stranahan won over 70 tournaments and is the only player to this day to have won the Silver Medal four times.
Michael Bonallack – 1968 (Carnoustie) and 1971 (Royal Birkdale)
Bonallack is remembered arguably as the finest amateur golfer that Britain has ever produced having won two Open Silver Medals during his playing career.
Peter McEvoy – 1978 (St Andrews) and 1979 (Royal Lytham and St Annes)
Peter won two Silver Medals in a row and was a leading British Amateur golfer for many years.
He went on to Captain the Britain and Ireland team to their first ever back-to-back Walker Cup success in 1999 & 2001.
Hal Sutton – 1981 (Royal St George’s)
Sutton won the Silver Medal at the 1981 Open Championship at Royal St George’s at the age of 23.
This provided the springboard for the American to go on and win his one and only Major Championship just two years later at the USPGA Championship.
Jose Maria Olazabal – 1985 (Royal St George’s)
Jose Maria became the only amateur to date to win all the R&A medals that were on offer at the time.
He described winning this particular medal as a major boost in the early part of his career and propelled him onto winning 30 professional titles including two Masters titles.
Olazabal went on to captain Europe in the 2012 Ryder Cup, known as the Miracle at Medinah.
Paul Broadhurst – 1988 (Royal Lytham and St Annes)
Paul Broadhurst turned professional after winning the Silver Medal in 1988.
Having only won six titles during his professional career not much was expected of him as he joined the senior ranks in 2015, however he went on claim the 2016 Senior Open Championship held at Carnoustie, coming from four shots back in the final round.
Tiger Woods – 1996 (Royal Lytham and St Annes)
A 20-year-old Tiger Woods finished three under par overall for the tournament hosted in Lancashire.
As well as claiming the Silver Medal in ’96, he also became the first player to win three consecutive US Amateur titles.
The rest of his career to date as they say is history.
Justin Rose – 1998 (Royal Birkdale)
A 17-year-old Justin Rose holed his third shot at the 72nd hole to clinch the Silver Medal to finish in a tie for fourth place overall.
It would be sometime before he would emulate the success he showed as a 17-year-old amateur, as he missed his first 21 cuts as a professional.
He has consistently been one of the world’s finest players over the last 10 years, however, and won both the 2013 US Open and 2016 Olympic Golf competition.
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Rory McIIroy – 2007 (Carnoustie)
Rory played his first major championship at just 18 years of age where he signed for the only bogey-free round on day one.
He went on to shoot 76,73 and 72 in the subsequent rounds finishing in 42nd place overall.
McIlroy went on to lift the Claret Jug at Royal Liverpool in 2014.
The Englishman claimed the Silver Medal at Royal Birkdale, finished in a tie for fifth and subsequently turned professional later that year.
In 2009, his first year as a pro, he would better that performance with a tie for third – his best finish in a major to date.
Matteo Manassero – 2009 (Turnberry)
Italian golfer Matteo Manassero is the youngest winners of the Silver Medal at the age of just 16 and is also to date the youngest competitor in the modern major era, shooting a final round of 69 which gave him a score of two over par for the tournament.
Matt Fitzpatrick – 2013 (Muirfield)
Matt Fitzpatrick was low amateur at Muirfield in 2013, finishing in a tie for 44th.
He has since gone on to become the youngest Englishman to win five European Tour titles.
Sam Locke – 2018 (Carnoustie)
Scotsman Locke secured the award in 2018 at Carnoustie with a score of nine-over par.
Since then he has played several European Tour events as well as tournaments on the Challenge Tour and PGA EuroPro Tour.
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