117th Open - Royal Lytham & St Annes 1988
Seve repeats his Lytham victory
For the first time in its 128-year history The Open would finish on a Monday, due to torrential rain that washed out play on Saturday, and it saw one of the great duels in the Championship’s history. Seve Ballesteros won for the second time at Royal Lytham & St Annes, and the third time in all, but only after a thrilling final-round of 65 to beat Nick Price by two strokes.
“So far, it is the best round of my life. Nick Price showed he was a Champion, too. I was just a little bit luckier. It is a pity there can only be one Champion.”
Price had led by two from the Spaniard and defending Champion Nick Faldo, with all three playing in the same group. All of them birdied the sixth but when the other two eagled the seventh and Faldo only parred, the Englishman drifted out of contention, finishing with a 71 in third place, six behind the winner. Price played the six holes from the sixth to the 11th in four under but went from one ahead to one behind as Ballesteros had played them in six under.
After Ballesteros bogeyed the 12th, Price hit his second at the 13th to two inches but Ballesteros holed from 18 feet to stay tied. At the 16th, Ballesteros hit a 9-iron to three inches to go ahead by one and then at the last, with Price on the green in two, the Spaniard hit a wondrous chip to six inches. Unlike his collapse in 1982, Price had done little wrong this time. He three-putted the last for a 69 but second place was assured.
“So far, it is the best round of my life,” Ballesteros said. “Nick Price showed he was a Champion, too. I was just a little bit luckier. It is a pity there can only be one Champion.”
Price said: “It was a thrill to play to this standard. When you are beaten by somebody, especially the way he played, you bow out gracefully.”