Baddeley’s magical 64
AARON Baddeley is eyeing lastditch qualification for next month’s US PGA Championship after matching Ian BakerFinch’s magical British Open round of 64 at Royal Birkdale.
Baddeley’s six- under- par earned him his best Open finish, a tie for 27th after six missed cuts in seven previous attempts.
The dual Australian Open champ was hoping to equal the major championship- record 62 that South Africa’s Branden Grace shot on Saturday when he lined up a 10m eagle putt on the 17th.
“I gave it a run,” Baddeley said. “But it was nice to hole the 10- footer coming back.”
Baddeley, 37, then scrambled for par on the last to equal Baker- Finch’s 64 in when his countryman raised the Claret Jug with the lowest- ever winning total at Birkdale.
“I was thinking 63. I was trying to chip it in for 63,” he said. “I knew Ian shot a low one but I didn’t know it was 64. I played beautifully. I don’t think I could hit my irons much better.”
Baddeley heads into next week’s Barracuda Championship in Nevada knowing only a victory will earn him a start in the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow. MARC Leishman craves to complete golf’s most famous walk after posting his third British Open top- 10 finish in four years.
Beaten in a playoff at St Andrews and equal fifth at Royal Liverpool the year before, Leishman had a final- round fiveunder 65 to finish equal sixth at Royal Birkdale — and be the leading Aussie again at four under.
“You grow up watching all this stuff on TV and hope you’re e going to get there one day,” he said.said “To be there on a Sunday afternoon when the stands are full, getting that ovation coming oming up the 18th, it feels really nice. It would be nice to walk up there one day with a four- shot lead and enjoy it more.”
Aaron Baddeley. Jordan Spieth after tapping in on the 18th to win the British Open yesterday. Picture: Getty US PGA Championship