The Open: Eagle putt adds to Young's near-miss agony

·2-min read

Cameron Young admitted his eagle at the last actually made his near miss at The Open a little harder to take.

The American sunk a putt for a two at the 72nd hole, but playing partner Cameron Smith etched his name onto the Claret Jug with a birdie moments later, sealing victory after starting the day four shots behind leading duo Rory McIlroy and Viktor Hovland.

Young finished on 19 under, one stroke behind Smith, while crowd favourite McIlroy ended up third on 18 under after a closing 70 – five worse than Young's final round, and six more than the imperious Smith.

His last-hole heroics had given Young a glimmer of hope that a play-off might be forthcoming, though he did not expect the on-song Smith to fluff his lines at St Andrews.

"No, Cameron was not going to miss that," he said.

"It probably hurts a little worse to come up one shot short. If you lose by eight you don't really care.

"But I played well. I would have signed up for 65 this morning, and to watch Cameron shoot what he did, it was pretty amazing. I had a front-row seat to I'm sure one of the better rounds that's been played this year.

"And we both started four back of two guys that are capable of as much if not more than just about everybody else in the world.

"I know Cameron Smith's ranked very highly in the world. I don't know exactly what, but I imagine top five or six. And this kind of just is more proof that he is that good and he is one of the very, very best players in the world."

Young was pleased with how he dealt with the pressure of being in the mix on the final day of a major and hopes to keep putting himself in that position.

"I think I handled it pretty well," he said.

"At this point – not as much as some of those other guys – but I've at least been around the lead a lot this year, so it's not the first time I've been in that situation.

"I think I said at the PGA one of these times I'll shoot five under on the back nine and that will be enough, and here I did that and it wasn't.

"I guess one of these times I'll shoot six on the back nine on Sunday and that will be enough!"

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