1958 Open Championship

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1958 Open Championship
Tournament information
Dates 2–5 July 1958
Location Lytham St Annes, England
Course(s) Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club
Statistics
Par 71
Length 6,635 yards (6,067 m)
Field 96 players, 40 after cut[1]
Cut 147 (+5)
Prize fund £4,850
$13,580
Winner's share £1,000
$2,800
Champion
Australia Peter Thomson
278 (–6), playoff
← 1957
1959 →
Lytham &St Annes is located in England
Lytham &St Annes
Lytham &
St Annes
Location in England

The 1958 Open Championship was the 87th Open Championship, held from 2–5 July at the Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club in Lytham St Annes, England. Peter Thomson won his fourth Claret Jug in five years in a 36-hole Saturday playoff, four strokes ahead of Dave Thomas. It was the first playoff at the Open since 1949 and the seventh consecutive year that Thomson, 28, finished either as champion or runner-up.[2] The 278 scored by Thomas and Thomson was a record low for the Open.

Qualifying took place on 30 June–1 July. Entries played 18 holes at Royal Lytham & St Annes and 18 holes at Fairhaven. With over 300 entries qualifying was played in three-balls, as had also been the case in 1956.[3] The number of qualifiers was limited to a maximum of 100. Ties for 100th place would not qualify. The qualifying score was 148 and 96 players qualified. Peter Thomson led the qualifiers on 133 after scoring 63 on the Championship course in his first qualifying round. His total of 133 was a record for qualifying, surpassing the 134 scored by Bobby Jones in 1926 and by John Panton in 1952. Ken Bousfield, one of the successes of the British 1957 Ryder Cup team and the American Frank Stranahan were amongst those who scored 149 and failed to qualify. Stranahan was suffering from a back muscle strain and took 81 in his second qualifying round.[4]

The total prize money was increased from £3,750 to £4,850. The winner's prize remained unchanged at £1,000 but the prizes for second to tenth place were increased. Second place received £650 with £500 for third, £350 for fourth, £300 for fifth, £250 for sixth, £200 for seventh, £150 for eighth, £125 for ninth and £100 for tenth. The prizes of £30 for the next 15 places and then £25 each for the next 25 players were unchanged. The prize for winning the qualification event was increased to £50 while the four £25 prizes for the lowest score in each round were also unchanged.[5]

The maximum number of players making the cut after 36 holes was set at 50. Ties for 50th place did not make the cut. Just 40 players qualified for the final two rounds by scoring 147 or better. 10 players had scored 148 but that number became 11 when they were joined by Peter Mills after he holed a short putt at the 18th, the last shot of the day. He himself missed the cut but by holing the putt he also eliminated the other 10, who would have qualified had he missed it.[4]

Eric Brown moved into contention after a third round 65, coming home in 30. In the tournament's final round, playing almost an hour before the leaders, he had 2s at the 9th and 12th holes in the afternoon but at the last he drove into a bunker and then 3-putted for a 6, finishing on 279. Thomas and Thomson, in the second to last group, both needed 4 to beat Brown. Thomas two putted from 12 yards for his 4 but Thomson had a 10 foot putt for a 3. His putt just missed and he tied with Thomas on 278. The final group included the overnight leader Christy O'Connor and Leopoldo Ruiz. They both reached the 18th needing a 4 to join Thomas and Thomson. However, unlike the previous group, they both drove into bunkers. Ruiz took two to get out of the bunker and his chance was gone. O'Connor's third from 100 yards shaved the hole but he was left with a 16 foot putt to tie the leaders. The putt grazed the hole and finished 4 inches past. Ruiz eventually took 7 to finish three behind.[6]

In the playoff on Saturday, Thomson was four up after seven holes but Thomas had reduced the lead to one at lunch. Thomson gained another stroke on the first hole of the afternoon round but Thomas picked up a stroke on each of the next two holes to tie the scores. The scores were still level after 7 holes but at the 8th Thomson holed from 8 feet while Thomas missed a shorter one. Thomson got a birdie 3 at the 10th where Thomas again missed a putt taking 5. Thomas then took 5 at the 11th to give Thomson a four shot lead which he held to the end.[7]

Only two Americans were in the field of 96: Gene Sarazen, the 1932 champion, finished ten strokes back at age 56, in a tie for 16th place.[1] Monte Bradley, a 27-year-old Army private from Texas, shot 154 and missed the cut by seven strokes.[8][9]

Past champions in the field[edit]

Player Country Year(s) won R1 R2 R3 R4 Total To par Finish
Peter Thomson  Australia 1954, 1955, 1956 66 72 67 73 278 –6 1
Henry Cotton  England 1934, 1937, 1948 68 75 69 72 284 E T8
Max Faulkner  England 1951 68 71 71 78 288 +4 T16
Bobby Locke  South Africa 1949, 1950, 1952, 1957 76 70 72 70 288 +4 T16
Gene Sarazen  United States 1932 73 73 70 72 288 +4 T16
Fred Daly  Northern Ireland 1947 71 74 72 73 290 +6 T20

Round summaries[edit]

First round[edit]

Wednesday, 2 July 1958

Place Player Country Score To par
1 Peter Thomson  Australia 66 –5
2 Christy O'Connor Snr  Ireland 67 –4
T3 Henry Cotton  England 68 –3
Max Faulkner  England
Gary Player  South Africa
T6 Tony Coop  England 69 –2
Norman Drew  Northern Ireland
Jean Garaïalde  France
T9 Harry Bradshaw  Ireland 70 –1
Joe Carr (a)  Ireland
Harold Henning  South Africa
Bernard Hunt  England
Bill Large  England
Dave Thomas  Wales
Flory Van Donck  Belgium

Second round[edit]

Thursday, 3 July 1958

Place Player Country Score To par
1 Christy O'Connor Snr  Ireland 67-68=135 –7
2 Leopoldo Ruiz  Argentina 71-65=136 –6
T3 Dave Thomas  Wales 70-68=138 –4
Peter Thomson  Australia 66-72=138
T5 Max Faulkner  England 68-71=139 –3
Eric Lester  England 73-66=139
T7 Tony Coop  England 69-71=140 –2
Bernard Hunt  England 70-70=140
Flory Van Donck  Belgium 70-70=140
Harry Weetman  England 73-67=140

Amateurs: Carr (+2), Charles (+8), Deighton (+8), Scrutton (+9), Perowne (+10), Fox (+10), Randall (+12), Byrne (+14), Slater (+20).

Third round[edit]

Friday, 4 July 1958 - (morning)

Place Player Country Score To par
1 Peter Thomson  Australia 66-72-67=205 –8
T2 Dave Thomas  Wales 70-68-69=207 –6
Flory Van Donck  Belgium 70-70-67=207
T4 Eric Brown  Scotland 73-70-65=208 –5
Christy O'Connor Snr  Ireland 67-68-73=208
Leopoldo Ruiz  Argentina 71-65-72=208
T7 Max Faulkner  England 68-71-71=210 –3
Eric Lester  England 73-66-71=210
T9 Peter Alliss  England 72-70-70=212 –1
Henry Cotton  England 68-75-69=212
Gary Player  South Africa 68-74-70=212

Final round[edit]

Friday, 4 July 1958 - (afternoon)

Place Player Country Score To par Money (£)
T1 Dave Thomas  Wales 70-68-69-71=278 –6 Playoff
Peter Thomson  Australia 66-72-67-73=278
T3 Eric Brown  Scotland 73-70-65-71=279 –5 425
Christy O'Connor Snr  Ireland 67-68-73-71=279
T5 Leopoldo Ruiz  Argentina 71-65-72-73=281 –3 275
Flory Van Donck  Belgium 70-70-67-74=281
7 Gary Player  South Africa 68-74-70-71=283 –1 200
T8 Henry Cotton  England 68-75-69-72=284 E 125
Eric Lester  England 73-66-71-74=284
Harry Weetman  England 73-67-73-71=284

Amateur: Carr (+10).

Playoff[edit]

Saturday, 5 July 1958

Place Player Country Score To par Money (£)
1 Peter Thomson  Australia 68-71=139 –3 1,000
2 Dave Thomas  Wales 69-74=143 +1 650

Thomson won in a 36-hole playoff.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Media guide". The Open Championship. 2011. p. 78. Archived from the original on 18 April 2012. Retrieved 8 July 2012. 
  2. ^ "Thomson takes British playoff". Toledo Blade. Associated Press. 6 July 1958. p. 3-sports. 
  3. ^ "British hopes in Open golf - Confidence after Ryder Cup win". The Times. 30 June 1958. p. 3. 
  4. ^ a b "Ninety-six qualifiers for Open Championship - Thomson's record aggregate". The Glasgow Herald. 2 July 1958. p. 4. 
  5. ^ "Golf - R. & A. raise prize money - Open Championship". The Times. 3 December 1957. p. 4. 
  6. ^ "Play-off today at Royal Lytham - Thomson and Thomas tie for Open golf title". The Glasgow Herald. 7 July 1958. p. 5,7. 
  7. ^ "Thomson again Open champion - Four-stroke win in play-off". The Glasgow Herald. 5 July 1958. p. 7. 
  8. ^ "Sarazen trails by 11 in 'British'". Milwaukee Sentinel. Associated Press. 4 July 1958. p. 4, part 4. 
  9. ^ "Thomson, Welshman tie in British Open". Milwaukee Sentinel. Associated Press. 5 July 1958. p. 5, part 2. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
1958 U.S. Open
Major Championships Succeeded by
1958 PGA Championship

Coordinates: 53°44′58″N 3°01′05″W / 53.7495°N 3.0180°W / 53.7495; -3.0180