On this day in 2014: Rory McIlroy wins 143rd Open Championship at Hoylake

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Rory McIlroy won the Open in 2014 (David Davies/PA) (PA Archive)
Rory McIlroy won the Open in 2014 (David Davies/PA) (PA Archive)

Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy won the 143rd Open Championship at Hoylake on this day in 2014.

The then 25-year-old carded a final-round 71, finishing on 17 under par – two shots clear of Ryder Cup team-mate Sergio Garcia and AmericanRickie Fowler – to secure his third major title.

McIlroy was six shots clear of Fowler going into the final round and seven ahead of Garcia, but his advantage was soon shaven down to two as the Spaniard picked up five strokes through the first 10 holes.

Garcia crucially bogeyed the 15th to release the pressure, however, and had to settle for a closing 66, while Fowler earned a share of second spot by registering three birdies over the last four holes.

McIlroy added the Claret Jug to his trophy cabinet alongside the 2011 US Open and 2012 US PGA titles and became the second Northern Irishman to be crowned Open champion in four years after Darren Clarke’s 2011 success.

“It feels incredible,” McIlroy said after his triumph. “The Open is the one that we all want and strive for and to be able to hold this Claret Jug is an incredible feeling.

 (PA Archive)
(PA Archive)

“It wasn’t easy. There were a lot of guys making runs at me and I just needed to stay focused, keep in the present and concentrate on what I was doing out there.

“To be three legs towards the career grand slam at the age of 25 is a pretty good achievement. It’s not going to sink in for a while.”

McIlroy went on to claim his fourth major title the following month with a second US PGA crown.

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