India’s Shubhankar Sharma produced the best-ever result by an Indian at golf’s oldest Major, the Open Championships, as he finished tied-eighth here on Sunday.
Sharma, playing his third Open, was the only player on the final day to log a bogey-free round of 1-under 70 for a total of 5-under 279. He finished Tied-eighth, earning a recall to the Open in 2024 as well.
Sharma’s result was also the second-best by an Indian in any major, behind the T-5 by Anirban Lahiri at the 2015 PGA Championships.
Jeev Milkha Singh was also T-9 at the 2008 PGA Championships. The previous best by an Indian at an Open was T-27 by Jyoti Randhawa in 2004 at Royal Troon, where the Open returns next year.
The runaway winner was the short left-hander from the United States, Brian Harman, who refused to fall prey to nerves as he had six years ago in the US Open.
He started the wet and soggy final day at Royal Liverpool Golf Club with a five-shot lead and finished six ahead of a foursome — Tom Kim (67), Sepp Straka (69), Jason Day (69), and Jon Rahm (70), who were all tied at 7-under 277.
Sharma, who made the cut on his 27th birthday on Friday, and Cameron Young were tied eighth at 5-under 279, while Rory McIlroy (68) and Argentine Emiliano Grillo (68) were tied sixth.
Sharma called his play during the week and the final round in particular “the best I have played in such conditions.” “Without doubt, it was the best I have played and on such a challenging course,” he said.
Sharma produced rounds 68-71-70-70, all four rounds being par or better, and was tied for eighth place. His two previous finishes in the Open were both T-51.
The 2024 Open will be held at the Royal Troon, and the final day will be on Sharma’s 28th birthday.
“The Open is always around my birthday, so it is always a double celebration,” he had said earlier.
He had kept the celebrations on hold this week but said that with friends and family here, they would all be held next week.
“Right now, I am just thrilled with the week’s result. It is something I have always believed in. The last few weeks I played good golf, but things did not come together, and this week, right from the start, I had a good feeling,” said Sharma.
Talking of records, Sharma said, “I am not playing for records. I just want to play my best golf. Jeev, Jyoti, and Anirban are all great players. To be mentioned along with them is an honour by itself.”
Sharma started with 13 pars and then had a birdie on the 14th and later missed birdie putts on the 17th and 18th by the closest margins.
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