European Tour Senior Open, Victory for Fred Couples. July 29 2012
Fred Couples (Getty Images)
Easy swinging Fred Couples birdied Turnberry’s closing two holes to claim a great victory in the 2012 Senior Open Championship, Presented by Rolex. Fred finished two shots clear of compatriot Gary Hallberg following a dramatic final round in Ayrshire, Scotland.
At the start of play on the last day Fred had trailed overnight leader Bernhard Langer by one shot. He then took advantage of the German’s slip on the back nine to capture the title with a closing round of -3 under par 67, and a total of -9 under par for the tournament. Fred of course was very happy with his victory;"It was a very fun day. Being paired with Bernhard, you've got to play great and for a long time there, we were neck and neck. But for me I felt like I was hitting the ball very strong, very solid and I was really lucky that it didn't rain because I'm not very good in the rain, I don't wear a golf glove; I had two gloves in the bag that were all‑weather gloves and I was scared to death to ever put those on. That was a big birdie on 17 to make 18 play easier and then when I hit the last putt, the hole got in the way and I won by two. I'm very happy and excited to have won this." During is career Fred had previously finished in the top ten of The Open Championship on nine occasions, wining the Senior Open has made up for those near misses; " It’s the next best thing for all of us, obviously I never won The Open. I came close. Last night I really thought about the golf course. I knew I needed to play it well, and this is my biggest Senior Tour win, by far, winning on a truly great, great golf course. I can say I won a Senior Open at Turnberry. I think the best thing about the whole week was playing this course. It's a challenging, very tough course, under extreme weather. It’s nice to win any event, but there have been a lot of great champions on this thing, that's for sure." Second placed Gary Hallberg had a last round 66, on Friday Gary had equalled the Ailsa course record with a stunning 63, he lamented having to play in the worst of the conditions; " I played my two best rounds in the worst of the conditions, I was very pleased with the way I played and congratulations to Freddie on a great performance.I didn't think about setting a target. I tried to stay in the present moment. I think I did a nice job of that. I wanted to get ahead of myself. But I stayed in the present moment." Bernhard Langer finished up sharing sixth place, ruing some bad play and bad luck with the pot bunkers; "Obviously the back nine was a disaster, I just hit a couple of loose shots and got some bad breaks. I ending up in pot bunkers and all of those things. We were on the clock, as well, which didn't help. We had to rush a lot of the shots which didn't make it any easier. Fred played very well, a solid round of golf and I think he deserves to win. He finished in style with birdie, birdie. That's like a great champion, so it was well deserved."