Here’s what you need to know should The Open go to extra holes
Welcome to our concise overview of the Open Championship playoff format, particularly in relation to the renowned Royal Liverpool Golf Club. Known as one of the finest golf courses in the UK, Royal Liverpool has seen spectacular regulation play wins from legends such as Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods. Yet, the thrilling suspense of the Open Championship often goes beyond standard play, leading to unforgettable playoff moments.
The playoff format of the Open Championship, devised to resolve a tie after the scheduled rounds, brings an extra dash of excitement and strategy to the tournament. The format has seen various changes over the years, enhancing the suspense for both the players and spectators alike.
In this brief overview, we’ll touch upon the essentials of this playoff format, its evolution, and some notable instances. We’ll also spotlight the Royal Liverpool Golf Club and its connection to these playoffs, like when the course last played host to an Open playoff.
So whether you’re a seasoned golf fan or a newcomer looking to familiarise yourself with the sport, this page provides a swift, yet comprehensive introduction to one of the Open Championship’s most gripping aspects, enriched by the heritage of the Royal Liverpool Golf Club. Prepare for a quick dive into the exhilarating world of golf’s oldest major championship’s playoffs!
It’s been a while since The Open went to extra holes – and we wait to see if that will be the outcome this year.
A playoff is an exciting way to complete a major championship, especially to find out who lifts the Claret Jug.
Here is The Open playoff format…
What is The Open Championship playoff format?
The format for the playoff that could take place at Royal Liverpool is really straightforward.
The players that finish in a tie for the lead after 72 holes of stroke play will head back onto the course to play a four-hole aggregate playoff.
The player with the lowest aggregate score in the four additional holes will be crowned Champion Golfer of the Year.
If the competitors remain tied after the regulation play-off, those remaining will play sudden death until we have a champion.
This is different from the US Open which determines a winner in a two-hole aggregate playoff if required. It used to be an 18-hole playoff before this was scrapped in 2018.
On the PGA Tour, a sudden-death format is usually adopted where players just continue hole by hole. As soon as a player wins a hole, the playoff is over.
Royal Liverpool is one of the best golf courses in the UK, and has seen winners such as Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods in regulation play, but when was the last Open playoff?
When was the last time we had an Open play-off?
There have been 21 play-offs to decide who will win The Open – with a quarter of them in this century, and the last time was at St Andrews in 2015 when Zach Johnson eased out Louis Oosthuizen and Marc Leishman in a four-hole playoff.
The past couple of decades have seen some infamous playoff battles at The Open.
Who can forget Stewart Cink seeing off then-59-year-old Tom Watson at Turnberry in 2009? Or Paul Lawrie’s stunning 4-iron at Carnoustie in 1999 to beat Justin Leonard and Jean van de Velde following the Frenchman’s spectacular meltdown at the 72nd?
1876: Bob Martin beat Davie Strath
1883: Willie Fernie beat Bob Ferguson
1889: Willie Park Jr beat Andrew Kirkaldy
1896: Harry Vardon beat JH Taylor
1911: Harry Vardon beat Arnaud Massy
1921: Jock Hutchison beat Roger Wethered
1933: Denny Shute beat Craig Wood
1949: Bobby Locke beat Harry Bradshaw
1958: Peter Thomson beat Dave Thomas
1963: Bob Charles beat Phil Rodgers
1970: Jack Nicklaus beat Doug Sanders
1975: Tom Watson beat Jack Newton
1989: Mark Calcavecchia beat Wayne Grady and Greg Norman
1995: John Daly beat Costantino Rocca
1998: Mark O’Meara beat Brian Watts
1999: Paul Lawrie beat Justin Leonard and Jean van de Velde
2002: Ernie Els beat Stuart Appleby, Steve Elkington and Thomas Levet
2004: Todd Hamilton beat Ernie Els
2007: Padraig Harrington beat Sergio Garcia
2009: Stewart Cink beat Tom Watson
2015: Zach Johnson beat Marc Leishman and Louis Oosthuizen
A Compelling Twist to the End of the Tournament
The Open Championship playoff format provides a compelling twist to the end of the tournament, ensuring a clear winner and adding an additional layer of excitement. This format, tied intrinsically with the prestigious history of the Open Championship, holds a special place in the sport of golf. Its evolution over the years has only increased its impact, contributing to some of the most memorable moments in golfing history.
With courses such as the Royal Liverpool Golf Club as its stage, the playoffs have seen the rise of champions and the unforgettable drama that only such a high-stakes scenario can deliver. The last Open playoff at this historic venue adds another fascinating chapter to its illustrious story.
While this page provided a brief overview, the world of golf and its Open Championship playoffs offers an ocean of intriguing details, interesting trivia, and inspiring stories. To fully appreciate it, we encourage you to continue exploring, whether you’re a golf enthusiast or a curious newcomer. The suspense, the thrill, and the unmatched tradition of the Open Championship playoffs await your discovery!
Follow NCG on Twitter!
Q1: What is the Open Championship playoff format?
A: The Open Championship playoff format is a system used to determine a clear winner if players are tied after the completion of the standard four rounds of golf in the Open Championship. The format has evolved over time and currently involves a three-hole aggregate playoff, followed by sudden death if needed.
Q2: How has the playoff format for the Open Championship evolved over the years?
A: Initially, the Open Championship playoff format consisted of a full 18-hole round played on the next day. This was later reduced to a four-hole aggregate playoff in 1986. As of 2019, a three-hole aggregate playoff is followed by a sudden death round if players remain tied after these three holes.
Q3: When was the last Open Championship playoff, and who were the participants?
A: The Open Championship playoffs are quite rare and depend on the specific year and event results. As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, the last Open Championship playoff took place in 2015, involving Zach Johnson, Marc Leishman, and Louis Oosthuizen.
Q4: When was the last Open Championship playoff at the Royal Liverpool Golf Club?
A: This information might vary depending on the date and outcomes of recent tournaments. As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, there has been no Open Championship playoff held at Royal Liverpool Golf Club.
Q5: What happens if players are still tied after the three-hole aggregate playoff in the Open Championship?
A: If players are still tied after the three-hole aggregate playoff, the match moves to a sudden death format. This means that the tied players will continue to play holes until one player scores lower than the others, deciding the champion.
Please note: The answers provided above are accurate up to my training cut-off in September 2021. For the most recent information, please check the latest resources or official Open Championship website.
We dive deep into the golf ball roll back plans!