The Latest: Second round of British Open is done _ finally!
Jul. 18, 2015
ST. ANDREWS, Scotland (AP) — The Latest from the 144th British Open on the Old Course at St. Andrews (all times local):
Finally! The second round of the British Open is over — nearly 39 hours after it began.
Play was suspended more than three hours on Friday because of heavy rain, and then halted for nearly 10 1/2 hours on Saturday by high winds.
The third round is now set for Sunday, followed by the first Monday finish at the Open since 1988.
American Dustin Johnson is the 36-hole leader with a 10-under 134, one shot ahead of England's Danny Willett, and two ahead of Scotland's Paul Lawrie, the 1999 Open champion.
Jordan Spieth is still in the mix after winning the Masters and the U.S. Open. Despite a shaky putter, he's within five shots of the top spot.
Tiger Woods? He's headed home, shooting a 7-over 151 that left him tied for 147th. It's the first time in Woods' professional career that he's missed the cut in consecutive majors.
Late in the day, after most fans had already called it a day, there were still a couple of intriguing stories out on the Old Course.
David Duval, the 2001 British Open champion, bounced back from a three-putt bogey at the 17th for a tap-in birdie at the 18th that gave him the even-par score he needed to make the cut.
For Duval, whose career quickly went downhill after his only major title, this will be the first chance to play 72 holes at the Open since 2008.
Meanwhile, Australian qualifier Scott Arnold made four straight birdies on the tough back nine to slip through, also with a score right on the cut line.
There are a couple of groups still to finish, but it looks as though 80 players will head to Sunday's third round.
Remember Paul Lawrie?
Sixteen years after becoming one of the most improbable winners in British Open history, Lawrie will go to the third round just two shots behind leader Dustin Johnson.
The 46-year-old Scot shot a 70 on Saturday, pushing his score on the Old Course to 8-under 136 at the midway point.
Back in 1999, Lawrie rallied from 10 shots behind on the final day and won in a playoff at Carnoustie. Of course, that Open is largely remembered for Jean van de Velde throwing away a three-shot lead with a triple-bogey on the 72nd hole.
Since then, Lawrie has missed the cut eight times and hasn't finished higher than 26th in golf's oldest championship.
Now, he's positioned to make another run at the claret jug, though he'll have to do it without any help from Van de Velde.
After waiting around most of the day to finish the second round, Dustin Johnson was rewarded for his patience.
He's the leader at the British Open through 36 holes.
Johnson finished out a 3-under 69 with a birdie at the 18th hole Saturday evening, giving him a two-round total of 10-under 134. That puts him one shot ahead of Danny Willett, who finished the second round on Friday.
Johnson wasn't able to complete the round, which was halted by rain, and was only able to play 32 minutes early Saturday before high winds suspended play again.
After a 10½-hour delay, Johnson returned to the Old Course and made three straight pars before the closing birdie gave him the outright lead.
Jordan Spieth struggled with the putter and shot 72, leaving him five shots off the lead. The young Texan is attempting to take another step toward the Grand Slam after winning the first two majors of the year.
Daniel Brooks has made a hole-in-one at the British Open.
The Englishman aced the 174-yard 11th hole shortly after play resumed following a 10 1/2-hour suspension because of high winds.
When Brooks saw the ball disappear into the cup, he threw up his arms and slapped hands with his caddie.
Even with the hole-in-one, Brooks seemed unlikely to make the cut. He was still at 4-over par — four strokes off the projected cut line with just seven holes to play.
But at least he'll have the memory of a lifetime from his week at the home of golf.
Brooks was one of the last players to get into the Open, qualifying with a seventh-place finish last weekend at the Scottish Open.
Tiger Woods is finishing up another dismal performance in the majors.
Woods bogeyed his first three holes after a 10 1/2-hour wind delay Saturday at the British Open, pushing his total score to 8-over par with three holes to play.
For the first time in his professional career, Woods will miss the cut in two straight majors. He was also eliminated at last month's U.S. Open after 36 holes, and showed no signs of turning things around at St. Andrews.
On a course where he has won two of his three British Open titles, Woods managed only two birdies over his first 33 holes. He is currently tied for 149th in the 156-player field, trailing the leaders by a staggering 17 strokes.
Welcome back, British Open!
After a delay of nearly 10 1/2 hours because of fierce winds, the second round finally resumed Saturday at the Old Course.
Dustin Johnson is tied for the lead with Danny Willett at 9 under, but still has three more holes to play including the tough 17th. Willett got the day off, having finished the rain-delayed second round on Friday.
The third round is pushed back to Sunday, and the Open will have its first Monday finish since 1988.
The winds are whipping at more than 20 mph, but are expected to lighten during the evening.
Still, it could make things tough for 39 players still needing to complete the second round. That group also includes Jordan Spieth, winner of the last two majors and four shots off the pace.
The British Open has a deal for you.
If you're in St. Andrews on Monday and want to see the final round, tickets will be going for only 10 pounds apiece (approximately $15.60). That's quite a discount from the normal 80 pounds per day.
The R&A announced the discounted prices after pushing back the final round to Monday. High winds have suspended play since 7:32 a.m., and the only thing they're trying to do Saturday is complete a second round already delayed by heavy rains the previous day.
The third round will be held on Sunday.
In addition to cheap tickets for the final round, any child under 16 gets in for free if accompanied by an adult, per the tournament's normal policy. Also, the R&A expects to give a 60 percent discount for Saturday tickets, assuming play resumes at 6 p.m. and the second round is completed.
Danny Willett could've taken the day off.
But the co-leader of the British Open has returned to St. Andrews to get in some work on the putting green.
Willett completed 36 holes on Friday, shooting a 69 that left him at 9-under 135 midway through the tournament.
He won't play at all Saturday, after high winds forced a suspension of play and pushed back the third round to Sunday.
The final round will be bumped back a day, as well, giving the Open its first Monday finish since 1988.
As Willett was practicing, a huge gust of wind swept across the putting green. He looked up at flags the flapping frenetically atop the grandstands lining the first hole, turned to his caddie and burst out laughing. Said Willett, "It will be a Tuesday finish at this rate."
Willett's 9-under score is matched by Dustin Johnson, who still has four more holes to play in the second round.
The practice range at St. Andrews is buzzing with activity.
Well, except for Jordan Spieth, who's sprawled out on the grass, his head resting against his golf bag.
Who can blame him? The wind delay that halted the British Open early in the morning has stretched on for more than nine hours.
There's still no word on whether Spieth or any of the other 38 players still needing to complete the second round will return to the Old Course on Saturday.
The R&A keeps issuing weather updates, which essentially say the same thing: the wind is still too strong to resume play, but officials are hopeful of finishing the second round before dark.
The earliest possible start time in the latest bulletin — 6 p.m.
The British Open remains a waiting game.
The R&A had hoped to get back on the course for the rest of the second round at 4 p.m., but the winds have not yet dropped to acceptable levels. Now, the plan is to resume play at 5 p.m.
Of course, it's all dependent on the wind.
Gusts of up to 40 mph (64 kph) halted the round at 7:32 a.m. — just 32 minutes after the resumption of play.
The Open already had a rain delay of more than three hours on Friday and is headed for its first Monday finish since 1988.
Thirty-nine players, including co-leader Dustin Johnson, have yet to complete 36 holes.
The R&A says it considered playing 36 holes on Sunday and looked at other options before deciding on the first Monday finish at the British Open since 1988.
Rules director David Rickman says after considering all possible changes, "the best conclusion was to accept that a Monday finish was the best answer."
A year ago, organizers made an unprecedented schedule change before the third round at Royal Liverpool, going to a two-tee start to make sure they finished play ahead of heavy rains. The decision turned out to be a good one, as storms pounded the course shortly after it finished.
Rickman says it would have been difficult to play off the first and 10th tees, and officials thought it was too much to ask the players to go 36 holes on Sunday.
He says play won't resume until there's a "meaningful reduction in the wind speed."
The best case scenario is to resume the second round around 4 p.m.
The British Open will be the first major golf championship to finish on a Monday since the 2009 U.S. Open at Bethpage.
That year, heavy rains delayed the tournament right from the very first day, and the final round didn't begin until Sunday evening. Play was suspended because of darkness with the leaders on the second hole, so they had to play most of the round the next day.
Lucas Glover won by two strokes for his only major title.
This will be the first Monday finish at the British Open since 1988 at Lytham.
The British Open is headed for a Monday finish.
The R&A intends to finish the second round Saturday, play the third round Sunday, and hold the final round Monday.
It will be the first Monday finish at the British Open since 1988 at Lytham.
The second round was suspended for more than three hours because of rain on Friday. Then, after only 32 minutes of play Saturday morning, play was halted again by high winds.
Thirty-nine players have yet to complete the second round, including co-leader Dustin Johnson.
The R&A hopes to resume play around 4 p.m., assuming wind gusts of nearly 40 mph (64 kph) finally die down.
The head of the International Olympic Committee hopes the world's best golfers will stay in the athletes' village during the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.
While the top professional golfers are used to some of the world's most luxurious hotels, IOC President Thomas Bach said the village experience is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Bach says he "can only advise them to stay in the Olympic Village, because if they don't, afterward they will regret it."
The IOC chief is also calling on all major governing bodies, especially the U.S.-based PGA Tour, to comply with World Anti-Doping Agency guidelines.
While the PGA Tour has a doping policy, it is not as strict or transparent as WADA standards. Anyone competing in the Olympics will have to follow WADA protocol in the months leading up to the Olympics, and Bach would like to see that extended beyond the games so "you have an equal playing field for all the golfers."
Bach is in St. Andrews to promote the return of golf to the Olympic program next year.
It was last held at the 1904 St. Louis Games.
The R&A says the British Open will not be resuming for at least three more hours because of howling winds.
The governing body issued a noon bulletin that says "the forecasts we are receiving consistently show that no golf will be possible before 3 p.m. Our intention is to commence play as soon as possible after that."
Another update will be issued at 2 p.m.
Thirty-nine players have yet to complete the second round, which means the third round will surely carry into Sunday. If the weather doesn't improve, there's even the possibility of a Monday finish.
Winds are gusting up to 40 mph (64 kph).
There's still no word from the R&A on when play will resume at the British Open.
The second round was suspended at 7:32 a.m., just 32 minutes after play began on Saturday. Thirty-nine players have yet to complete the second round, which was suspended for more than three hours on Friday because of heavy rain.
Now it's wind holding up play, with gusts reported up to 40 mph (64 kph). The R&A issued a statement saying "there still has been no reduction in the strength of the wind," so the suspension of play remains in effect.
The head of the International Olympic Committee is feeling sorry for Tiger Woods.
The world's most famous golfer is mired in the worst slump of his career, raising doubts that he will qualify when golf returns to the Olympic program at the 2016 Rio Games. Woods is ranked No. 241 in the world and shows no signs of turning things around at the British Open, where he will likely miss the cut.
IOC President Thomas Bach is in St. Andrews to promote Olympic golf. He says he spoke with Woods this past winter and expressed hope that he'll be at the Rio Games. He says Woods replied that he would "love to play" and will do "everything to qualify," but he's not sure if he'll be able to make the 60-player field for the Olympics.
If Woods doesn't qualify, Bach says he would "really feel sorry for him." But the IOC chief doesn't think it will hurt the Olympics if Woods isn't there.
The R&A is defending its decision to resume the second round of the British Open in blustery conditions.
Play re-started at 7 a.m., only to be halted just 32 minutes later. Thirty-nine players still have to complete the round, including co-leader Dustin Johnson and the winner of the last two majors, Jordan Spieth.
After several players, including Spieth, complained about the R&A's call, the governing body issued a statement. It said officials spent an hour at the far end of the course, assessing whether the course was playable. After determining that balls were not moving on the greens, play resumed even though the R&A concedes "conditions were extremely difficult."
Shortly afterward, the wind began gusting even more. The R&A says "this could not be foreseen at the time that play was restarted and made a material difference to the playability of the course."
Gusts of up to 40 mph (64 kph) are projected through much of the day. The R&A hasn't announced when play will resume.
Thirty-nine players have yet to complete the second round of the British Open, including some of the biggest names in the field.
Among the leaders, Dustin Johnson (9 under), Paul Lawrie (8 under), Louis Oosthuizen (7 under), Charl Schwartzel (6 under), Hideki Matsuyama (6 under), Jason Day (6 under) and Jordan Spieth (5 under) still have holes to play.
So does Tiger Woods, though he has little chance of making the cut at 5 over with six holes remaining. At the moment, the cut is projected at even par.
This will be Woods' third missed cut in the last four majors, continuing a slump that has dropped him to No. 241 in the world rankings. He's missed the cut in only one other British Open, back in 2009 at Turnberry.
There's plenty of grumbling at St. Andrews after play was halted again for high winds.
Jordan Spieth is among the players saying the R&A never should have resumed the second round of the British Open at 7 a.m. Saturday in conditions that made it tough to keep the ball from moving on the greens.
Winds are gusting up to 40 mph, and are not expected to calm significantly until the afternoon. As Lee Westwood tweeted, "This is going to be a long day."
Dustin Johnson began the morning with a one-shot lead, but he took a bogey at the par-5 14th after needing four shots to get down from alongside the green. He tried a pitch with his first attempt into the wind, only to have it blown back. He putted three more times to take a 6, leaving him tied for the top spot with Danny Willett at 9 under.
Spieth also three-putted at the 14th for a par and is four shots off the lead.
Willett completed the second round on Friday after heavy rain caused a delay of more than three hours. He shot a 3-under 69 for a 135 at the midway point.
There's another delay at the British Open.
Several dozen players returned to the course early Saturday morning to complete the second round after a rain delay of more than three hours the previous day.
But after only 32 minutes, play was halted again because of high winds.
Some players, including Jordan Spieth, are complaining that the R&A never should have re-started play in such blustery conditions. Spieth three-putted at his first hole of the day, the par-5 14th, for a par. Leader Dustin Johnson wound up making a bogey at that hole after being alongside the green in two shots.
Johnson dropped to 9 under, leaving him tied for the top spot with Danny Willett. Spieth is four back.
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