Lowry is Champion Golfer of the Year

​Ireland's Shane Lowry captured The 148th Open at Royal Portrush on Sunday after thrilling weekend of golf on the famed Dunluce Links.

  • 22 July 2019

​PHOTO: By Golffile.

After setting a course record 63 on Saturday his route to victory on Sunday was more about the challenges posed by the brutal summer weather.


With winds gusting 35kph and rain pelting down, Lowry held his composure and saw off his nearest rival Tommy Fleetwood by six shots on 15-under par.


"I'm feeling unbelievably calm, to be honest. I don't know why. It's not going to sink in for a couple of days, is it?" beams the Offalyman afterwards.


"It's just incredible to be sitting here with a trophy in front of me. Look at the names on it. Yeah, I just can't believe -- like I said, I couldn't believe that it was me. I couldn't believe it was happening.


I thought about it all day but I didn't really let myself think about it until I hit my tee shot on 17. As soon as I hit that tee shot I knew that I couldn't really lose a ball from there, and that's how I felt.


"Obviously I had a nice healthy lead going out and I hit a ropy tee shot on the first. I hit actually a decent second shot but it didn't go as far as I thought it was going to go. I actually hit a lovely shot.


"Then you're standing on the first green, Tommy has a great chance of birdie and I'm putting for bogey from eight feet. There's a potential three-shot swing. He misses, I make, and there's only one shot. That settled me an awful lot.


"Then when I had it kind of around the turn, I had a look at a few leader boards, and it was so hard out there. When that big shower came in on the 8, the 9 tee shot was just like put the ball down and hope for the best because it was incredible, the rain that was coming down.


"I think when I started to feel comfortable was after 14. I had a lovely one on 13. Tommy had missed the green and I hit a bad tee shot there. It was a silly bad tee shot. It was an easy 9-iron downwind, should be hitting the green with that. To get that opening that was huge.


"To be honest, I played the last five holes, I thought I played -- even though I bogeyed 14, I thought I played the last five holes incredibly well. And I felt incredibly good. I felt like I was going to do it, especially after 14 when Tommy went double, I went bogey. But I went 5 ahead with four to play.


"It was just incredible to walk down 18. The crowd is going wild. Singing "Olé Olé." It's like something that -- I just couldn't believe it was happening to me. And to have like -- it was nice, very nice of Paddy (Harrington) and G-Mac to be standing on the back of the tee for me. And Gary Murphy was there as well, who is a good friend of mine and was great to me when I started out on Tour.


"And obviously to have all my friends and family. I spotted my family when I walked around the corner to have a look where the flag was, and I spotted them all at the back of the green. To be honest, I welled up a little bit and Bo told me to catch a hold of myself, I still have to hit a shot. Thankfully I hit a decent shot in there and two-putted.


"To be honest, like, I walked down there and I tried to soak it in as much as I could. It was hard to soak it in because it's very surreal. It's a very surreal experience going down there. Especially with, I'm sure there was a lot of the crowd that wanted me to win today. So it was quite surreal, yeah."