2008 Open Championship
|Dates||17–20 July 2008|
|Course(s)||Royal Birkdale Golf Club|
|Organized by||The R&A|
Japan Golf Tour
|Length||7,173 yards (6,559 m)|
|Field||156 players, 83 after cut|
The 2008 Open Championship was a men's major golf championship and the 137th Open Championship, played from 17–20 July at Royal Birkdale Golf Club in Southport, England. Pádraig Harrington successfully defended his Open Championship title, his second; he shot four under par over the final nine holes and was four strokes ahead of runner-up Ian Poulter. Harrington was the last golfer to win the same major back-to-back for a decade until Brooks Koepka won consecutive U.S. Opens in 2017 and 2018.
About two-thirds of the field each year consists of players that are fully exempt from qualifying for the Open. Below is the list of the exemption categories and the players who are exempt. Each player is classified according to the first category by which he qualified, but other categories are shown in parentheses. Some categories are not shown as all players in that category had already qualified from an earlier category:
1. First 10 and anyone tying for 10th place in the 2007 Open Championship
K. J. Choi (7,15,19), Stewart Cink (7,19), Ben Curtis (3,4), Ernie Els (3,4,5,7,15,19), Sergio García (5,7,14,15), Richard Green, Pádraig Harrington (3,4,5,7), Hunter Mahan (7,15,19), Andrés Romero (5,7), Steve Stricker (7,15,19), Mike Weir (7,19)
3. Past Open Champions aged 60 or under on 20 July 2008
Mark Calcavecchia (15), John Daly, David Duval (4), Todd Hamilton (4), Paul Lawrie (4), Tom Lehman, Justin Leonard (7), Sandy Lyle, Greg Norman, Mark O'Meara (4), Tom Watson (28)
(Eligible but not competing: Ian Baker-Finch, Seve Ballesteros, Nick Faldo, Nick Price, Bill Rogers, Tiger Woods)
4. The Open Champions for 1998-2007
5. First 20 in the PGA European Tour Final Order of Merit for 2007
Ángel Cabrera (7,11,19), Paul Casey (7), Nick Dougherty, Niclas Fasth (7), Retief Goosen (7,11,19), Anders Hansen (6), Søren Hansen (7), Peter Hanson, Grégory Havret, Søren Kjeldsen, Colin Montgomerie, Justin Rose (7,15), Henrik Stenson (7), Richard Sterne (7), Graeme Storm, Lee Westwood (7)
7. The first 50 players on the Official World Golf Rankings for Week 21, 2008
Robert Allenby, Stephen Ames (14), Stuart Appleby (19), Woody Austin (15,19), Aaron Baddeley (15), Tim Clark, Jim Furyk (15,19,23), J. B. Holmes, Trevor Immelman (12,19), Zach Johnson (12,15,19), Robert Karlsson, Martin Kaymer, Anthony Kim, Phil Mickelson (12,13,14,15,19), Geoff Ogilvy (11,15,19), Sean O'Hair, Rod Pampling, Ian Poulter, Jeff Quinney, Rory Sabbatini (15,19), Adam Scott (15,19), Vijay Singh (13,15,19), Brandt Snedeker (15), Scott Verplank (15,19), Boo Weekley, Oliver Wilson
(Eligible but not competing: Shingo Katayama, Luke Donald withdrew prior to start of tournament with a wrist injury, Toru Taniguchi withdrew prior to start of tournament with a back injury)
8. First 3 and anyone tying for 3rd place, not exempt having applied above, in the top 20 of the 2008 PGA European Tour Order of Merit on completion of the 2008 BMW PGA Championship
Richard Finch, Graeme McDowell, Damien McGrane
9. First 2 European Tour members and any European Tour members tying for 2nd place, not exempt, in a cumulative money list taken from all official PGA European Tour events from OWGR Week 19 up to and including the Open de France and including the U.S. Open
Pablo Larrazábal, Scott Strange
12. The U.S. Masters Champions for 2004-2008
14. The U.S. PGA Tour Players Champions for 2006-2008
16. First 3 and anyone tying for 3rd place, not exempt having applied above, in the top 20 of the Official Money List of the 2008 PGA Tour on completion of the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial
Bart Bryant, Ryuji Imada
17. First 2 PGA Tour members and any PGA Tour members tying for 2nd place, not exempt, in a cumulative money list taken from The Players Championship and the five PGA Tour events leading up to and including the 2008 AT&T National
(Eligible but not competing: Kenny Perry)
23. The RBC Canadian Open Champion for 2007
24. The Japan Open Champion for 2007
27. First 2 and anyone tying for 2nd place, not exempt having applied (26) above, in a cumulative money list taken from all official Japan Golf Tour events from the 2008 Japan PGA Championship up to and including the 2008 Mizuno Open Yomiuri Classic
Hiroshi Iwata, Shintaro Kai
28. The Senior British Open Champion for 2007
International Final Qualifying
- Africa: Josh Cunliffe, Darren Fichardt, Doug McGuigan, Hennie Otto
- Australasia: Peter Fowler, Brad Lamb, Ewan Porter, Andrew Tampion
- Asia: Adam Blyth, Danny Chia, Lam Chih Bing, Angelo Que
- America: Craig Barlow, Rich Beem, Alex Čejka, Tom Gillis, Paul Goydos, Matt Kuchar, Doug LaBelle II, Michael Letzig, Davis Love III, Scott McCarron, Jeff Overton, Tim Petrovic, John Rollins, Kevin Stadler
- Europe: Thomas Aiken, Phillip Archer, Peter Baker, Grégory Bourdy, Ariel Cañete, Simon Dyson, Pelle Edberg, Johan Edfors, Ross Fisher, Jean-Baptiste Gonnet, David Horsey, José-Filipe Lima, Alexander Norén, Simon Wakefield, Anthony Wall, Paul Waring, Steve Webster, Martin Wiegele
Local Final Qualifying (Monday 7 July and Tuesday 8 July)
- Hillside: Rohan Blizard (a), Jamie Elson, Jean van de Velde, Chris Wood (a)
- Southport and Ainsdale: Jon Bevan, Gary Boyd, Jamie Howarth, Tom Sherreard (a)
- West Lancashire: Peter Appleyard, Barry Hume, Jonathan Lomas, Philip Walton
- Camilo Villegas - took spot not taken by Kenny Perry
- Pat Perez - replaced Luke Donald
- Jerry Kelly - replaced David Toms
- Heath Slocum - replaced Toru Taniguchi
Nationalities in the field
|North America (46)||South America (4)||Europe (60)||Oceania (21)||Asia (13)||Africa (12)|
|Canada (2)||Argentina (3)||England (27)||Australia (18)||China (1)||South Africa (12)|
|United States (44)||Colombia (1)||Northern Ireland (1)||Fiji (1)||Japan (7)|
|Scotland (5)||New Zealand (2)||Malaysia (1)|
|Ireland (3)||Philippines (1)|
|Austria (1)||Singapore (1)|
|Denmark (3)||South Korea (1)|
|France (5)||Thailand (1)|
Past champions in the field
Made the cut
|Player||Country||Year(s) won||R1||R2||R3||R4||Total||To par||Finish|
|Greg Norman||Australia||1986, 1993||70||70||72||77||289||+9||T3|
|Ben Curtis||United States||2003||78||69||70||75||292||+12||T7|
|Ernie Els||South Africa||2002||80||69||74||69||292||+12||T7|
|Justin Leonard||United States||1997||77||70||73||73||293||+13||T16|
|Todd Hamilton||United States||2004||74||74||72||75||295||+15||T32|
|Tom Lehman||United States||1996||74||73||73||75||295||+15||T32|
|David Duval||United States||2001||73||69||83||71||296||+16||T39|
Missed the cut
|Player||Country||Year(s) won||R1||R2||Total||To par|
|Tom Watson||United States||1975, 1977,
1980, 1982, 1983
|Mark Calcavecchia||United States||1989||76||75||151||+11|
|Mark O'Meara||United States||1998||74||77||151||+11|
|John Daly||United States||1995||80||89||169||+29|
- Sandy Lyle withdrew after ten holes of the first round when he was 11-over par at the time.
- Tiger Woods (2000, 2005, 2006) was recuperating from knee surgery and did not compete.
Lengths of the course for previous Opens:
Thursday, 17 July 2008
|Graeme McDowell||Northern Ireland|
|Rocco Mediate||United States|
|T4||Bart Bryant||United States||70||E|
|T7||Jim Furyk||United States||71||+1|
|Retief Goosen||South Africa|
Friday, 18 July 2008
|1||K. J. Choi||South Korea||72-67=139||−1|
|David Duval||United States||73-69=142|
|Jim Furyk||United States||71-71=142|
|Graeme McDowell||Northern Ireland||69-73=142|
|Rocco Mediate||United States||69-73=142|
Saturday, 19 July 2008
Greg Norman, age 53, became the oldest to hold at least a share of the 54-hole lead (it lasted just one year, as Tom Watson led after three rounds in 2009 at age 59). Due to extremely high winds, there were no under-par rounds, and it was first time since 1986 when the 54-hole leader was not under par.
|T2||K. J. Choi||South Korea||72-67-75=214||+4|
|T5||Ben Curtis||United States||78-69-70=217||+7|
|Anthony Kim||United States||72-74-71=217|
|Rocco Mediate||United States||69-73-76=218|
|Chris Wood (a)||England||75-70-73=218|
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Despite a wrist injury that almost forced him to withdraw prior to the tournament, Pádraig Harrington successfully defended his Open Championship title. Harrington pulled away from the field with a tremendous back nine and became only the fifth to repeat at the Open in the last fifty years. Runner-up Ian Poulter matched Harrington's 69 and was four strokes back, while Greg Norman faltered with eight bogeys for 77 and tied for third place with Henrik Stenson.
|Place||Player||Country||Score||To par||Money (£)|
|T5||Jim Furyk||United States||71-71-77-71=290||+10||180,000|
|Chris Wood (a)||England||75-70-73-72=290||0|
|Stephen Ames|| Trinidad and Tobago
|Ben Curtis||United States||78-69-70-75=292|
|Ernie Els||South Africa||80-69-74-69=292|
|Anthony Kim||United States||72-74-71-75=292|
|Steve Stricker||United States||77-71-71-73=292|
Amateurs: Wood (+10), Sherreard (+14).
- (a) denotes amateur
Cumulative tournament scores, relative to par
|Eagle||Birdie||Bogey||Double bogey||Triple bogey+|
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- "Donald out of British Open with wrist injury". Archived from the original on 13 July 2008. Retrieved 13 July 2008.
- Slocum's prayers answered with Taniguchi's withdrawal
- Kenny Perry facing criticism for skipping British Open
- Field for the British Open
- "Kelly gets spot in British Open after Toms withdraws". Archived from the original on 13 July 2008. Retrieved 13 July 2008.
- "Palmer takes British crown". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. 16 July 1961. p. 1B.
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- "2008 Open Championship". PGA of America. 20 July 2008. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
- "British Open Championship". ESPN. Retrieved 10 August 2015.
- 137th Open - Royal Birkdale 2008 (Official site)
- 137th Open Championship- Royal Birkdale (European Tour)
- 2008 Open Championship (PGA of America)
- 2008 Open Championship (about.sports)
2008 U.S. Open
|Major Championships||Succeeded by|
2008 PGA Championship