The Senior Open Championship

American Bruce Vaughan staged a remarkable comeback to beat compatriot John Cook in a sudden death play-off to win The 2008 Senior Open Championship on a thrilling final day at Royal Troon.

Vaughan and Cook both finished the Championship on a six under par total of 278 but it was Vaughan who held his nerve on the first extra hole to land the biggest pay cheque of his career - £199,000 (US$315,600) .

Both Bernhard Langer and Greg Norman had looked poised to mount a serious challenge, especially when Norman birdied five of the first seven holes, but both faltered late on to finish fourth and tied fifth respectively.

Instead it was unheralded Vaughan and Cook, playing in the final pairing, who were left to battle it out in an enthralling finale.

Cook had opened up a three shot lead with a birdie on The Postage Stamp eighth hole but a double bogey on the 11th and a bogey on the 12th saw that cushion eroded, as memories of his painful defeat to Nick Faldo at The 1992 Open Championship came flooding back.

When Vaughan birdied the 16th and Cook missed his par putt on the last, the 22nd Senior Open Championship went into a sudden death play-off, where Vaughan rolled in a 15ft putt to clinch the title his first Senior Major win and first tournament win.

For the 51 year old, who carded a final round one under par 70, the emotional victory ended a difficult two years which have included six operations on his troublesome left knee and two partial replacements.

Troon at a Glance

Course Length (2004 Open)
7, 175 Yards, PAR 71

Great Moment
Gene Sarazen holing-in-one at the famous 8th hole, the ‘Postage Stamp’, in 1973 at the age of 71. It made up for Sarazen’s disappointment at the same venue some 50 years earlier, when he came over from the USA but failed to qualify after enduring high winds in qualifying.

 

Claret Jug Replica