Silver Medal winner Christo Lamprecht believes he has ‘felt every emotion’ over the course of an Open debut which has only enhanced his desire to become a regular on golf’s biggest stage.
The South African was the sole amateur of six in the field to survive the cut at Royal Liverpool having flown out the traps with an opening-day 66 that saw him share the overnight lead.
Three successive over-par rounds led to Lamprecht finishing the week 11-over-par, enough for him to stand alongside the Champion Golfer on the 18th green and conclude a memorable summer which has also included an Amateur Championship victory.
“Now that everything is done, it is nice to look back and know I’m the last amateur standing,” he said.
“I’m very proud of myself. I didn’t have the best stuff for the last three days and I’ll need to reflect on that but I have learned a lot of lessons.
“On Friday afternoon, after I shot 79, I was talking to Stewart Cink. He said he had only led a major at the end of a round three times, so to say I have done already at 22 is pretty cool.
“It has been a week with every bit of emotion felt, coming off a high on Thursday and just not having it the last three days.
“I am very hard on myself and any good athlete needs to be, to an extent, but I am finishing the week with a smile.”
The 22-year-old brought plenty of smiles to the faces of those on the 17th tee during his final round, whipping the spectators into a frenzy as part of the day’s opening group alongside Danny Willett.
The 2016 Masters champion was one of two major winners Lamprecht played alongside through the week, having been joined by compatriot and childhood hero Louis Oosthuizen during his first two rounds to kickstart a memorable experience.
“Playing with Louis made me feel at home and at ease,” he said. “I’ve played golf with him before a few times and having someone to talk Afrikaans to, my home language, settled me down out the gate.
“Danny is a really funny guy. I had a blast with him out there and laughed with him a lot.
“Standing on 17 was a moment where it was such an amazing spot, a great hole, the atmosphere was electric and I just wanted to take it all in and have fun with it.
“It was really cool and it was nice to make par after that bad tee shot.”
The 6ft 8in Lamprecht is the first player since 2010 – the year of Oosthuizen’s crowning glory at St Andrews - to win the Silver Medal and Amateur Championship in the same year.
He joins a glittering list of previous winners including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose and Jose Maria Olazabal, names he is humbled to follow into the record books.
“I had a look at the list last night and it is really nice to be part of history like that and engrave my name into history,” said Lamprecht, who will begin his final year on the American college circuit in August.
“Hopefully there are many more to come. This week has given me a lot of motivation to work harder and keep on grinding.
“I have seen the next level and I really want to get there now.”