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The 150th Open

The eagle train


Lowry joins exclusive club by going back-to-back

Shane Lowry

Shane Lowry is no stranger to unforgettable Open moments and the Irishman created another slice of history at The 150th with a remarkable pair of back-to-back eagles.

The 2019 Champion chipped in from off the green on the 9th and 10th holes to become the first player to record consecutive eagles at an Open for 21 years, Phil Mickelson being the last to do so in 2001.

No player in the last 25 years, meanwhile, has carded successive 2s at par-4s across the four majors, with Lowry’s haul beginning from the left of the green at nine thanks to a kind lie in the rough, following a tee shot which left him just short of the threatening gorse.

He judged his chip to perfection to become the 14th player to pick up two shots at the 9th so far this week but he broke new ground by repeating the feat on the 10th.

No player had eagled the hole at The 150th Open until Lowry took aim just shy of 50 yards away from a tough pin position. A generous bounce helped the ball on its way to land in the cup and spark cheers of disbelief around the green.

“I hit a poor tee shot on 9 and got a pretty good break and just hit a lovely pitch,” he said.

“It was a nice lie in the rough and I could be fairly aggressive. I knew it was going to spin and hit a lovely shot.

“And 10 I hit a great drive and had a straightforward enough pitch. But it was a tricky pin.

“I was just trying to get as close as I could, and it just came out perfect and went in. Like the putt there, it was pretty cool, and it was good fun when those two went in.”

Lowry had hit just one eagle in his Open career before, at Muirfield in 2013, but was left frustrated by his inability to capitalise on the momentum after trebling that particular tally.

His double had seen him race to -9 and left him in contention to join those making an afternoon charge but three bogeys saw him almost back to where he started before he boarded the eagle train.

The 35-year-old birdied the last to sign for a 69 but he could not hide his disappointment at how the remainder of his round transpired.

“It was a very emotional day,” he said. “I felt like through the middle of the front nine I was just going along okay, not doing anything great.

“Obviously 9 and 10 happened and I felt like I was in the tournament. And did well to play my way out of the tournament from there.

“Pretty annoyed, to be honest. I keep telling myself all the time that you want to get yourself to the back nine on a Saturday with an opportunity to do something great.

“I got myself there today and I didn't perform. It wouldn't take Einstein to figure out what went wrong on the back nine. My putting was horrific.

“I shoot 1-under for the last seven holes and I'm very bullish about my chances going into tomorrow. Now I have no chance. It's just very disappointing.”

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