49th Open - Royal Cinque Ports 1909
Taylor cruises to 4th Open title
JH Taylor had not won The Open for nine years but he was back to his imperious best in winning a fourth title in the first Championship staged at Cinque Ports in Deal. A traditional out-and-back links along the seafront, the course is a only short distance south of Royal St George’s at Sandwich and had earned a reputation as a fine test for the whole game.
Taylor was certainly on his, hitting the ball higher than in his earlier days but making excellent use of his short game around the tricky greens. As usual he was steady, producing three rounds of 74 and a 73 in the second round which was the lowest score returned and put him into the lead. Ironically, it was during this round that he had his only 6 of the Championship. It came at the fifth but he still managed to go out in 37 and birdied with a 3 at the 18th.
Despite a flurry of missed four-footers on the second morning, Taylor still extended his lead to four strokes after 54 holes and then finished on a total of 295. A poor drive into the rough at the 16th was followed by a bold brassie onto the green for a 4. He won by six strokes from Tom Ball, a runner-up for the second year running after closing rounds of 76 and 76, and James Braid, the defending Champion, recovered from an opening 79 with scores of 75, 73 and 74. “I am proud to have won the first Open ever played on Deal Links,” Taylor said. “It is most worthy of such an event being held upon it.”
For the first time an Exhibition Tent was erected where manufacturers and retailers could show off their products and prizes were awarded to the best clubs in various categories.