Smith rallies to beat McIlroy at British Open for 1st major

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Cameron Smith, of Australia, holds the claret jug trophy as he poses for photographers on the 18th green after winning the British Open golf Championship on the Old Course at St. Andrews, Scotland, Sunday July 17, 2022. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)


ST. ANDREWS, Scotland (AP) — Cameron Smith is the British Open champion not many saw coming. The Australian and his magical putter stormed from behind at St. Andrews to overcome Rory McIlroy and win the British Open for his first major.

Smith made five straight birdies to start the back nine. He saved par on the dangerous Road Hole at the 17th.

And he finished with two putts from 80 feet for birdie and a 64. It’s the lowest final round ever by a winner at St. Andrews, and Smith matched the major championship score to par at 20 under. Cameron Young finished second.