Woods rues missed chances as Francesco Molinari wins The Open

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Tiger Woods says not being able to convert a one-shot lead at the Open Championship into a shock 15th major title is “going to sting”.

The American led at seven under before a double bogey on 11 stalled his bid as Francesco Molinari went on to win.

Francesco Molinari has become the first Italian to win a major, holding off a pack of star names to claim The Open Championship at Carnoustie.

Molinari produced a faultless final round of 69 in windy conditions on the Scottish links to finish eight under.

He finished two ahead of four players, including home favourites Justin Rose and Rory McIlroy, tied on six under.

Woods, 42, has not won a major since the 2008 US Open, with his career interrupted by personal problems and a serious back injury in recent years.

“I had a great opportunity,” said Woods, who shot 71 to tie for sixth.

The former world number one played himself into contention with a five-under-par 66 on Saturday – his lowest round at a major since 2011.

And two birdies on the front nine on Sunday, coupled with dropped shots for overnight leaders Jordan Spieth and Xander Schauffele, helped him take the outright lead of a major for the first time since his peak years.

Woods’ surge was accompanied by fervent support on the Scottish links, with a buzz of excitement following him around the course.

Ultimately he fell short after seeing his round derailed on the 11th, but finished five under for the tournament to post his lowest 72-hole total at a major since the 2012 Open.

“I know it’s going to sting for a little bit here, but given where I was to where I am now, I feel blessed,” he said.

“It felt great to be a part of the mix and build my way into the championship. It was a blast.

“I was saying earlier that I need to try and keep it in perspective because, at the beginning of the year, if they’d have said you’re playing the Open Championship I would have said I’d be very lucky to do that.”

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Fido

•Sport writer/blogger • Media strategist •Good citizen of Nigeria and Social Media Evangelist and a core die hard Real Madrid fan.

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