Former Open champion Shane Lowry has expressed his determination to double his major tally and join the list of Irish winners at Royal Liverpool.

Rory McIlroy won the Open the last time it was staged in Hoylake in 2014, while Fred Daly lifted the Claret Jug at the same venue in 1947 and Joe Carr claimed the Amateur Championship in 1953.

Lowry’s own Open triumph came on home soil at Royal Portrush in 2019 and the 36-year-old has been quietly rounding into form with top-20 finishes in his last three starts.

“I really struggled on the greens at the start of the year and then around the end of May I turned the corner and started to see a few going in again,” Lowry told the PA news agency.

“In the last few tournaments I’ve had days where I’ve felt really good on the greens. It’s not a nice place to be when you’re not holing any so it has been very encouraging.”

Lowry carded a closing 65 at Hoylake in 2014 to register his first top 10 in a major and contended in the 2021 US PGA Championshp and last year’s Masters.

“Since Portrush I feel like my major performances have been pretty good,” he added.

“I’ve given myself a couple of half chances here and there and I’ve had some nice finishes. I love the big weeks, it’s what I play the game for. It’s what gets me going and I get very excited going into major weeks.”

Is there anything new for 2023?

The 17th is a brand new par three which features an “infinity green” that offers views of the Dee Estuary, but which is protected by run-off areas and deep bunkers which could lead to some high scores. The creation of the hole has also allowed for a re-routing of the closing stretch to include two par fives over 600 yards and the 136-yard 17th.

Key tee times

0635 – Matthew Jordan, Richie Ramsay, Branden Grace.
0947 – Tommy Fleetwood, Scottie Scheffler, Adam Scott.
0958 – Cameron Smith, Wyndham Clark, Xander Schauffele.
1459 – Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Justin Rose.
1616 – Hurly Long, Seungsu Han, Marco Penge.

Weather forecast

Mostly sunny with a small chance of the odd light morning shower. Dry with prolonged sunshine from midday. Moderate west to northwesterly winds with gusts of 15-20mph from late morning.

Jon Rahm birdied the last hole of his first round to join Viktor Hovland in a share of the Masters lead.

Hovland held a three-shot advantage at one stage as he started the first major of the year with a magnificent seven-under 65 on Thursday.

Rahm matched the Norwegian's round to become the co-leader at Augusta National after starting with a double bogey.

The 2021 U.S. Open champion eagled the par-five eighth to go three under and fire a warning to the rest of the field.

Rahm birdied the 13th, 15th and 16th before rolling in a short putt for another gain at 18 following a brilliant approach shot.

Hovland had earlier signed for his lowest Masters round and his joint-best in a major, ending his day without a solitary bogey in great conditions.

Cameron Young and Brooks Koepka are just two shots behind the leading duo, with fellow American Sam Burns also five under through only eight holes.

Jordan Spieth, Shane Lowry, Xander Schauffele, Adam Scott, Joaquin Niemann and Sam Bennett are well poised on four under.

Bennett matched the record for the best front nine by an amateur in the Masters, hitting the turn in 32.

Defending champion Scottie Scheffler was two under approaching the turn, while Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods are one over and two over respectively in Georgia.

Will Zalatoris withdrew from the prestigious event due to injury.

Chris Kirk will take a two-shot lead into the final round of the Honda Classic after carding a 66 on Saturday to close in on his first PGA Tour title in eight years. 

The American, who claimed the last of his four top-tier triumphs back in 2015, leads a field that is devoid of any of the world's top-17 golfers.

His nearest rival is world number 330 Eric Cole, while playing partner and overnight leader Justin Suh is three strokes back after signing for an even-par 70.

Kirk, fresh from a stunning second-round 62, birdied the 17th and 18th to take charge at PGA National, although at least one household name is in the hunt.

World number 20 and 2019 Open champion Shane Lowry put himself firmly in the mix with a 65 that leaves him with a four-stroke deficit to overcome on Sunday. 

And the Irishman is playing with added motivation as he seeks to pay a fitting tribute to his uncle Jimmy Lowry, who died on Thursday.

"It's a very sad week for our family," he said. "To be honest, I wanted to go home on Thursday when I heard the news. A lot of people talked me out of it.

"I'm here now. I'm trying to play for him and play for his wife and his kids and my cousins and my uncles and my aunts and everyone at home because we're a very close family and very proud of our name and very proud of where we come from."

Reigning Korn Ferry Tour Championship winner Justin Suh has a chance to win his first PGA Tour event after finishing Friday's second round of the Honda Classic with the outright lead.

Suh, 25, produced a near-perfect campaign last season on the Korn Ferry Tour, finishing number one overall in points, winning the Tour Championship and being voted the tour's Player of the Year.

He has made the cut in eight of his 11 events to start his PGA Tour career, and after collecting his first top-20 in January's Farmers Insurance Open, he is looking to break through in a big way.

After his opening 66 at PGA National, Suh followed it up with a six-under 64 to reach 10 under overall and take a one-stroke lead into the weekend.

Alone in second place is Chris Kirk, who sits one shot back at nine under after posting a 62 for Friday's round of the day.

England's Ben Taylor is joined by American Monday qualifier Ryan Gerard in a tie for third at eight under, while the trio of Ben Martin, Eric Cole and Brice Garnett round out the top-five at seven under.

After finishing the opening round tied for the lead, both Billy Horschel and Joseph Bramlett fell back into a tie for 28th, following their 65s with a pair of 73s.

With none of the world's top-17 golfers in the field, world number 20 Shane Lowry will feel he still has a chance from his position at four under, tied for 16th, while 18th-ranked Im Sung-jae is at two under.

Billy Horschel and Joseph Bramlett are co-leaders at five under after Thursday's opening round of the Honda Classic.

Horschel came into the event as the second-highest ranked player in the field, at world number 19, as many of the world's best opted to take the week off ahead of bigger prize pools at the upcoming Arnold Palmer Invitational and The Players.

Looking to capitalise on the weaker field, Horschel posted six birdies and one bogey during his first trip this week around PGA National in his home state of Florida. Meanwhile, Bramlett went bogey-free for his 65, joining Horschel at the summit after a birdie on his final hole.

Rounding out an all-American top-five are Pierceson Coody, Justin Suh and Carson Young tied for third at four under, and Young still has three holes to play after his round was cut short by fading light.

The only player in the field ranked higher than Horschel – world number 18 Im Sung-jae – is part of the logjam at three under that includes English duo Ben Taylor and Matt Wallace, while world number 20 Shane Lowry headlines the group one further back with Australia's Min Woo Lee.

Defending champion Sepp Straka made a safe start at one under, with last season's title the first and only of his PGA Tour career so far.

Shane Lowry never considered joining the LIV Golf International Series due to his belief the breakaway league is "bad for the game", suggesting the "ridiculous" prize money throughout golf will alienate fans.

Lowry edged past Jon Rahm and Rory McIlroy to win the BMW PGA Championship last week, before labelling his victory "one for the good guys" amid the presence of LIV players at Wentworth.

While the 2019 Open winner criticised the Saudi Arabia-backed circuit in the build-up to that tournament, he attracted criticism earlier this year when he defended his decision to play the Saudi International by declaring; "I'm not a politician, I'm a golfer."

Lowry admitted he was wrong to make that remark, though his main objection to the existence of LIV Golf remains its decisive impact on the sport.

"When I said the 'I'm not a politician' remark, my first thought was 'why did I say that?' It was the wrong thing to say," he told the No Laying Up podcast.

"The thing is, I played the Saudi International for the last three years. So, for me, I would have been very hypocritical if I sat here and said, 'it's about where the money is coming from'.

"Will I go back and play the Saudi International next year? No. But I just think the LIV tour is bad for the game because it is very divisive.

"I am one of the players that thinks LIV should not exist. I don't like the idea of it.

"It is a tough subject for me to talk about because I have never been outspoken. The reason I hadn't is because no one had asked me about it. Rory is outspoken because every day he is in front of the media."

Lowry also believes the huge financial incentives available on every tour could turn fans away from golf, adding: "We are very lucky the corporate world loves golf and that's why we have such great sponsors and that's why we play for a lot of money.

"But I do feel like this is causing a division in the game and it's going to p*** people off.

"People are going to stop watching it. I think the amounts of money that are being thrown around are absolutely disgusting at the minute. I feel all people talk about is money now. 

"We play for points now in the FedEx Cup, but I watched the Tour Championship and all the commentators talked about was how much money they're going to win, and I thought, 'will you just talk about the trophy or the title or how many times Tiger [Woods] has won it?'

"The general Joe Soap, the guy who works his nuts off to make 50 grand a year and has to struggle to pay his membership at his golf club and loves the game so much, this probably p***** him off more than anyone."

An emotional Shane Lowry described his victory at the BMW PGA Championship as "one for the good guys".

Lowry finished ahead of Jon Rahm and Rory McIlroy by one shot at Wentworth to win the sixth DP Tour title of his career in a tournament that had caused some controversy with the inclusion of players from the breakaway LIV Golf series.

One of those players, Patrick Reed, was the clubhouse leader after going round in 63 on Sunday to finish on 14 under overall, before an even better round from Rahm of 62 gave the Spaniard a two-shot clubhouse lead.

Lowry managed to catch Rahm on 16 under with six holes remaining, but struggled to edge ahead as he could only score par on his next five holes.

He eventually managed to add that elusive birdie on the par-five 18th to secure the win, and admitted afterwards it was a tournament he particularly wanted to succeed in.

"It means a lot," he said. "It's been a good year but I felt like I've been close a few times and I only have a few tournaments left this season and I really wanted to try and win one.

"Obviously this one is right up there at the top of the list. I love it here, I've contended in the past and even going down the back nine today… the bad shots I've hit down the years when I've been in contention actually started to creep into my head. It's amazing what this game does.

"I'm so happy, words can't [describe] how happy I am, how much this means to me, how much I love this tour, how much I love this tournament, and I'm the happiest man in the world right now."


The Irishman recalled the 2017 tournament when he had been in contention against eventual winner Alex Noren, only for the Swede to shoot 62 in his final round just as Rahm did on Sunday.

"I remember Alex Noren did that to me one year, the year he won he went out early and shot 62 and that came into my head," he added.

"I got to 16 [under] and tried to get past that but I also had to worry about Rory behind me because he could do anything down the last few holes, you know how good he is.

"I said to my coach this morning 'I need to just allow myself to play golf today, I'm playing the best golf of my life and I need to just allow myself to do that', and I did."

When asked if the circumstances around the tournament heightened his emotions when he won, Lowry conceded it had been a factor, having been among those who openly criticised the inclusion of LIV Golf members.

"I think so, yeah. I made no secrets as to how I feel about the whole thing at the start of the week and I wanted to go out and win this tournament for myself first and foremost, but I think for this tour and everyone who has stayed loyal to this tour and everyone that's done everything for this tour," he said.

"I really feel like this is one for the good guys."

Shane Lowry clinched victory at the BMW PGA Championship on the final hole at Wentworth, pipping Jon Rahm despite a historic final round from the Spaniard.

Following the suspension of play on Friday due to the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, the tournament was reduced to 54 holes.

Rahm's round of 62 on Sunday gave him the clubhouse lead on 16 under par, and it could have been even lower had he not narrowly missed some birdie attempts early on.

His total of 29 on the back nine, which included two eagles, was the lowest in the tournament's history, despite a bogey on 15.

It looked likely that Lowry would overtake him when the Irishman also reached 16 under with six holes remaining, hitting an eagle on the fourth, and birdies on the seventh, eighth, 10th and 12th.

However, Lowry – the 2019 champion at The Open Championship – went on to par the next five, leaving a nervous wait to see if he could take advantage on the par five 18th.

Lowry did just that after an excellent approach shot that left him with two putts for birdie, which he executed to seal a sixth DP Tour win of his career.

Rory McIlroy finished joint-second with Rahm after carding a final round of 67, while overnight leaders Viktor Hovland and Soren Kjeldsen both slipped to T5 after only being able to go round in 70.

Patrick Reed had set the bar early in the day with his impressive round of 63, before Rahm overtook him, and the American also finished joint-fifth alongside Thomas Detry on 14 under, with Talor Gooch able to earn outright fourth after an eagle at the 18th.

A round of 65 from Lee Westwood saw him climb to T13, where he was joined by world number 443 Matthew Southgate, who carded his second round of 67 in a row.

Patrick Cantlay entered Sunday's final round of the BMW Championship with the outright lead, and he ended it with his second consecutive win at the event after birdieing his 17th hole to pull ahead by one stroke, finishing at 14 under.

He is the first player in the 16-year history of the FedEx Cup playoffs to successfully defend one of the playoff events.

On a tough scoring day where only three players shot better than 68, Cantlay kept his cool, taking advantage of Scott Stallings' missed birdie putt on 18 that would have also moved him to 14 under, draining his own final birdie moments later to head onto the 72nd hole with the lead.

Things threatened to heat up after Cantlay's last tee shot veered right into the bunker, but with a few branches hanging over his direct line to the flag, he played it safe and landed his approach on the open left-side of the green, leaving a 15-yard two-putt to win the tournament.

In his typical stoic fashion, he stepped up and nearly birdied it, lipping out for a tap-in par to secure back-to-back victories at the BMW Championship. 

It is Cantlay's 11th top-10 finish of the season, giving him the most for this PGA Tour season, leading Matt Fitzpatrick and Scottie Scheffler with 10.

Speaking to The Golf Channel after stepping off the 18th green, Cantlay said it takes a little bit of luck to win events like these, highlighting his tee shot on the 17th hole which looked destined for the bunker, only to bounce over and land in the middle of the fairway to set up his winning birdie.

"I hit a lot of solid shots, and then I got a couple of good breaks," he said. "Obviously on 17, that isn't a break I'm expecting, and it was really big for me to take advantage of it. 

"I've played a lot of great golf this week, and I'm happy to come away with the win.

"I made a lot of clutch five and four-footers today, the putter felt really good today, really solid, and I'll hopefully carry that into next week."

Stallings finished in outright second at 13 under, jumping up from 46th in the FedEx Cup standings to 12th, comfortably landing inside the top-30 to book his spot in the coming week's Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Course.

In the two-way tie for third at 11 under was world number one Scottie Scheffler and Xander Schauffele, and in a tie for fifth at 10 under was Canada's Corey Conners, South Korea's Lee Kyoung-hoon, and Australia's Adam Scott.

Lee and Scott had plenty to play for on Sunday, as Lee shot the round of the day with a 65 to leapfrog into the top-30, while Scott needed a bunker save on the 18th hole to book his spot in the Tour Championship, and he did so, finishing 29th in the FedEx Cup standings.

Rounding out the top-10 at nine under was a group that included Jon Rahm and Rory McIlroy, while Shane Lowry was one of three players to finish at eight under, and he was the unlucky player to fall out of the top-30 as Scott jumped in.

Sahith Theegala's tie for 15th at seven under was good enough to finish 28th in the FedEx Cup standings, Jordan Spieth was at six under, and Cameron Young, who looked like a potential winner heading into the weekend, ended up at five under after back-to-back 72s on Saturday and Sunday.

Brandon Wu holed out an eagle to grab a share of the lead with Im Sung-jae moments before play was halted and ultimately suspended on Saturday at the Wyndham Championships due to inclement weather.

Only 12 of 86 players completed their third rounds on Saturday, with Im and Wu both managing just 11 holes before play was called off amid rain and lightning in Greensboro, North Carolina.

There are 10 players within two strokes of the lead including five chasing their first wins on the PGA Tour.

The lead duo are tied at 12-under, with the South Korean moving into joint top spot on the leaderboard after four birdies across his 11 holes.

American 25-year-old Wu landed a birdie on the 10th hole and followed that up with an eagle on the 11th to draw level with Im just before the horn blew to suspend play. After a lengthy delay, play was called off for the day with light fading.

Wu had shared the lead at the halfway point with Kim Joo-hyung and Ryan Moore but the latter slipped two shots back after two bogeys from his completed 10 holes on Saturday.

John Huh, who held the lead after a first-round nine-under-par 61, steadied to be equal second at 11-under-par through 11 holes alongside Kim who completed 10 holes.

Thailand's Kiradech Aphibarnrat was the only player sitting near the top who finished their third round on Saturday, to be 10-under-par, with none of the rest of the top 10 getting through more than 11 holes.

Irishman Shane Lowry only got through 13 holes having been forced to charter a private jet to make his tee time after leaving the course on Friday presuming he had missed the cut. Lowry is 11 shots off the pace.

The third round will resume at 7.30am local time on Sunday.

A poor second round from John Huh opened the door at the Wyndham Championship, with Brandon Wu, Kim Joo-hyung and Ryan Moore capitalising to claim a share of the lead at nine under heading into the weekend.

Huh was two strokes clear after his opening round nine-under 61, but he was 10 shots worse on his second trip around Sedgefield Country Club, shooting a one-over 71 to sit one off the lead.

Of the three leaders, Kim had the best round with his 64, posting seven birdies and one bogey, with Moore shooting a 66, and Wu getting around in 67. All three posted top-five putting days according to Data Golf's strokes gained stats, with Kim leading the field (4.61 strokes gained), Moore third (3.31) and Wu fifth (3.06).

One stroke off the lead along with Huh is American Russell Henley and South Korea's Im Sung-jae, with India's Anirban Lahiri part of the next group at seven under.

Japan's Satoshi Kodaira and Australia's Brett Drewitt are in the group tied for 10th at six under, England's Tyrrell Hatton is at five under, and Sweden's Henrik Norlander rode the second-best putting performance of the day to reach the weekend at four under.

Will Zalatoris responded to a poor opening round with a 66 to sneak one stroke inside the cut-line, Adam Scott and Michael Gligic are right on the cut-line at two under, and pre-tournament favourites Shane Lowry and Corey Conners missed out by one stroke.

 

John Huh leads by two strokes after the first round of the Wyndham Championship, shooting a career-low nine-under 61 in his first trip around Sedgefield Country Club on Thursday.

With seven birdies, one eagle and no bogeys in his round, Huh had his game working from all areas. According to Data Golf's strokes gained stats, the American was the second-best in the tee-to-green category (5.29 strokes gained), third in approach shots (3.25) and sixth in putting (3.21).

Speaking to the media after his round, Huh said he did not feel like he was playing his best, but he is glad to be in such a strong position after entering the week on the fringe of the FedEx Cup Playoffs.

"It’s kind of strange," he said, "because I wasn’t really feeling great with my game and I shoot my career low – it’s kind of weird. 

"Sort of mixed feelings, but I’ll take this any day. I was able to take advantage of a good break and good shots, that’s all I can say."

Jordan Spieth clinched the RBC Heritage title after winning the first hole of a play-off against Patrick Cantlay.

Spieth started strong with two eagles from the first five holes, and trailing by two strokes heading to the 18th, he needed a birdie to keep things interesting. He delivered, finishing one stroke off Shane Lowry's outright lead at the time.

Lowry looked poised to control proceedings down the second nine, before a botched chip ended up rolling into the water on 14 for a double-bogey, going from one stroke in the lead to joining the chasing pack at 12 under.

Cantlay shot a tidy 68, which included a birdie on 17 to grab a share of Spieth's lead, and missed a birdie putt on 18 for the win.

In the play-off on 18, both players found the bunker in their approaches to the green, but while Spieth had a relatively friendly lie, Cantlay's ball was plugged deep into the sand.

Spieth's bunker shot was terrific, giving him a tap-in par, while Cantlay's sailed 30 feet past the hole and could not pull off the miracle required to force a second play-off hole.

The win is Spieth's first in over a year since the 2021 Valero Texas Open, and his first since becoming a father. He was greeted by his wife and son on the 18th green after the triumph.

"Last week [at the Masters] was really a killer for me, my favourite tournament in the world, not making the weekend, so I tried to work a little extra here," Spieth said. "It feels amazing.

"I won this tournament without a putter! This is one of the worst tournaments I've putted that I've stayed in contention. I just tried to stay positive on the back nine today, gritty.

"I have a lot of belief in my putting. The fact that I feel like I can get it done in an off-week is a really good feeling, so I know what I need to work on in the next few weeks to get ready for the rest of the season."

Sepp Straka threatened to join the playoff after he moved into a share of the lead at 13 under with an outrageous long birdie putt on 17, but had to take a bogey on 18 after a poor approach to the green had him flirting with out-of-bounds territory.

Harold Varner III also had a chance to join Spieth and Cantlay with a 40-foot putt on the 18th hole, but narrowly missed.

Joining the seven-player group tied for third was Cam Davis, who shot a bogey-free 63 for the best round of the day, as well as JT Poston.

Erik van Rooyen had the outright lead early in the day after birdieing four consecutive holes starting on the second, but four bogeys on the back nine took him out of the hunt – the South African tying for 10th with Tommy Fleetwood at 11 under.

Collin Morikawa shot his best score of the week with a 68, but it included a triple-bogey on the par-three 17th to finish at seven under in a tie for 26th with Kevin Na and Maverick McNealy.

Justin Thomas was one shot further back at six under after his 67 gave him his best round of the week.

Reigning champion Stewart Cink was disappointing after a 67 in round one, following it with rounds of 75, 71 and 74.

Harold Varner III is in position to claim his maiden PGA Tour victory, shooting an eight-under 63 on Saturday to take a one-shot lead at the RBC Heritage.

Varner matched Cameron Young's opening-round score at Harbour Town with a bogey-free round, to move to 11-under for the tournament coming into the final day.

After a disappointing finish on Friday, going four-over on the final four holes, the 31-year-old responded strongly with four birdies in the opening six holes.

Varner will need to be just as focused on the final day, with quality opponents in striking distance.

Reigning FedEx Cup champion Patrick Cantlay and Erik van Rooyen sit a shot back after 54 holes at 10-under, along with 2019 British Open winner Shane Lowry, fresh off his third-placed finish at the Masters.

Like Varner, Lowry also shot a one-over 72 on Friday and coupled his four birdies on the front nine with bogeys on the third and sixth hole, before finishing strong.

Birdies on the 10th and 11th holes put the Irishman on track and following another birdie on the par-five 15th, he closed his round out with another in front of the iconic lighthouse on the 18th.

The eased conditions allowed the 35-year-old to attack the pin, on the way to shooting his lowest score at Harbour Town.

Former RBC Heritage winner Matt Kuchar, Hudson Swafford, Sepp Straka and Aaron Wise were all a further stroke back, tied at nine-under.

Billy Horschel and Jordan Speith are also among the stacked chasing pack, on eight-under heading into the final day.

Patrick Cantlay holds a two-stroke lead after the second round at the RBC Heritage following a four-under par 67.

After posting a bogey-free 66 on the first day, the world number six's second round featured three bogeys, but he closed it out with four consecutive birdies starting on the par-five 15th hole to tie for the best round of the day.

Over his first two rounds, Cantlay has birdied 10 of the 18 holes at Harbour Town.

Speaking to the media after his round, Cantlay explained that his finish was exactly how he wanted to head into the weekend.

"Obviously, that's a dream finish," Cantlay said. "I finally rolled in some putts and that was really nice to see going into the weekend.

"Just staying with my game plan and continuing to leave the golf ball in the right spots, which is paramount around this place, I think is the key."

Six players shot 67 on Friday, including second-placed Robert Streb, who is alone at seven under.

First-round leader Cameron Young could not come close to repeating his unbelievable round of 63, going 10 strokes worse, but he is still very much in the mix in a tie for third at six under with a group of players including Cameron Tringale and Erik van Rooyen.

Chilean pair Joaquin Neimann and Mito Pereira are one shot further back at five under, along with Jordan Spieth, while Corey Conners and Shane Lowry have continued their fine form from The Masters to be in the hunt at four under.

Pre-tournament favourite Collin Morikawa posted his second consecutive 70 to sit in a tie for 34th at two under, but blew a chance to go into round three in the top-20 after double-bogeying the 18th.

Justin Thomas finished one stroke better than the cut-line at one under, while reigning champion Stewart Cink held on to see the weekend at even par along with Webb Simpson and Danny Willett.

Cameron Smith's Masters hangover saw him finish one over, missing the cut along with Dustin Johnson, who followed up Thursday's 72 with an equally disappointing 71.

Other notable names to drop out include Kevin Kisner, Russell Henley and Matt Fitzpatrick, with the latter carding 75 to fall three strokes short.

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