Senior British Open 2022: Darren Clarke Becomes 4th to Win Open Championship Double

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJuly 24, 2022

Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Darren Clarke achieved The Open Championship double.

The 53-year-old won the Senior Open Championship at Gleneagles in Scotland on Sunday, narrowly edging out Padraig Harrington.

Legends Tour @euLegendsTour

He's done the double! <a href="https://twitter.com/DarrenClarke60?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DarrenClarke60</a> wins The <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SeniorOpen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SeniorOpen</a> Presented by <a href="https://twitter.com/ROLEX?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ROLEX</a> 🏆 <a href="https://t.co/m02iHvqPPz">pic.twitter.com/m02iHvqPPz</a>

Clarke earned a birdie on No. 18 to finish at 10 under and avoid a playoff with Harrington. He joins Gary Player, Tom Watson and Bob Charles as the only men to win The Open Championship and Senior Open.

Senior Open Leaderboard

1. Darren Clarke (-10)

2. Padraig Harrington (-9)

T-3. Mauricio Molina (-8)

T-3. Doug Barron (-8)

T-3. Ernie Els (-8)

T-3. Thongchai Jaidee (-8)

T-3. Steven Alker (-8)

T-3. Paul Broadhurst (-8)

9. Colin Montgomerie (-7)

T-10. Paul Lawrie (-5)

T-10. Y.E. Yang (-5)

Full leaderboard available at DP World Tour's official site

Clarke and Paul Broadhurst were tied at nine under through 54 holes. Broadhurst bogeyed the second hole at the start of the fourth round and was quickly playing from behind. He had an opportunity to grab a share of the lead on No. 18 but settled for par to remain at eight under.

The golfers had to wait through a lengthy weather delay. The rain, which had been falling earlier in the round, began coming down in buckets and flooding the course. It looked like postponing the play until Monday was a distinct possibility.

PGA TOUR Champions @ChampionsTour

"No idea where it went." 😂<br><br>Absolutely pouring and leader <a href="https://twitter.com/DarrenClarke60?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@darrenclarke60</a> stripes it. <br><br>Relatable. <a href="https://t.co/HzTqmaYVqe">pic.twitter.com/HzTqmaYVqe</a>

Legends Tour @euLegendsTour

The groundstaff are working hard to get us back under way 💪<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SeniorOpen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SeniorOpen</a> <a href="https://t.co/wiMqNJfnoV">pic.twitter.com/wiMqNJfnoV</a>

Things finally cleared up enough to get things going at 8 p.m. local time, which put the remaining competitors in a race against the clock. The conditions still presented a challenge, though, since soggy fairways and greens meant the ball wouldn't move as much as it had for much of the tournament.

Mauricio Molina and Doug Barron, who were already in the clubhouse, might have felt a little better about their odds of getting into a playoff. They both tied for Sunday's lowest score and climbed 12 spots up the leaderboard after going five under.

The top portion of the standings was tightly packed. When he settled for par on No. 15, Clarke had seven golfers breathing down his neck at eight under.

Legends Tour @euLegendsTour

Alker, Harrington, Jaidee, Els - it's a birdie bonanza after the restart 🐦<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SeniorOpen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SeniorOpen</a> <a href="https://t.co/qbSLcjCL9b">pic.twitter.com/qbSLcjCL9b</a>

Harrington applied more pressure to Clarke by closing out his day with a birdie on No. 18. He made sure to look at his line from every angle before approaching his ball and sinking the putt.

Legends Tour @euLegendsTour

It's a birdie-birdie finish for <a href="https://twitter.com/padraig_h?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@padraig_h</a> and he leads in the clubhouse at -9 🐦<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SeniorOpen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SeniorOpen</a> <a href="https://t.co/BVvscZagXb">pic.twitter.com/BVvscZagXb</a>

That capped off a solid final round from the two-time Open Championship winner, who carded a three-under 67.

Clarke still had two more holes to find the birdie that could decide the tournament, though. A par on No. 17 meant it all came down to the 18th hole, which he birdied in each of the first three rounds.

With Harrington watching closely, Clarke deposited his drive onto the fairway. His approach landed just outside the green, but with his eyes on a birdie, he brought out the putter. That proved to be the right call, as he navigated the tricky green with ease.

Clarke didn't have the perfect round yet avoided any calamitous mistakes and found the critical shots when he needed them.


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