Francesco Molinari wins The Open for 1st career major title

Francesco Molinari of Italy is congratulated by Tiger Woods of the United States after a birdie on the 18th hole during the final round of the 147th Open Championship at Carnoustie Golf Club

Francesco Molinari of Italy is congratulated by Tiger Woods of the United States after a birdie on the 18th hole during the final round of the 147th Open Championship at Carnoustie Golf Club

Woods made the turn with a 2-under 34 and held the solo lead by one at 7-under.

The biggest blunder belonged to Woods, his red shirt blazing against the yellow grass of dry Scottish summer.

New Open champion Francesco Molinari hopes becoming the first Italian major victor will inspire a new generation of players just as Costantino Rocca did for him in 1995.

Woods did not seek out the fan but appeared to look in the direction of the shout.

Another dropped shot at the 17th meant he needed to hole his approach to No. 18 for eagle to force a playoff, but it settled about 12 feet short.

Rory finished tied second after a rollercoaster of a final round.

Then, he waited in the trailer to see if anyone could catch him. Just when he took the lead and everyone's imagination began to swirl about what might be, he kicked away his best chance of breaking a decade-long drought in major championships.

"He hit a lot of little lovely pitches too to basically kick-ins", said Woods.

But he was one of just two in the 79-player field who failed to make birdie, shooting 76 and sliding from a three-way tie atop the leaderboard at 9 under at the start into a tie for ninth by the end.

When he hit it in the bunker on 10 and hit a phenomenal shot I thought now he has done what he needs to do and then the double-bogey at 11 destabilised everything.

Sunday's final round, in which Woods shot an even-par 71 was an eye-opening day - for Woods and for his competitors. A bogey, double-bogey run at Nos.

Francesco Molinari wins Open as Tiger Woods falls short
Woods looks as strong as he did in his prime, even though he's had surgeries, a sex-scandal, a divorce and a drug-related DUI. I was calm - you know, as calm as you can be playing in the last round of a major close to the lead, playing with Tiger.

It used to be that Woods was steely and superhuman, and no one dared get in his way.

The 24-year-old from California kept playing with a smile on his face despite finding himself, as he described it, "in the strangest spots possible on the golf course" with playing partner Spieth. But Spieth is a 24-year-old with three major titles and many years to get more.

By the time Woods and Molinari reached the 72nd hole, it was a longshot that Woods would win. "He's healthy. I wouldn't say we're anxious about him, but he's one of those guy that's always in with a shot".

Molinari was not at all fazed by the huge crowds and the media circus following Woods, and he did not have a single bogey all day, following on from a blemish-free 65 on Saturday.

Oh, and of Molinari, he said, "He's always been a great player, I just think with how he's played this year, there's just maybe a little more belief".

Later Sunday he tweeted he wasn't "THAT drunk last night!"

Of that there is little doubt.

A victory would complete a most remarkable comeback for Woods, who has had four back surgeries, a marital scandal and a DUI arrest since his last major.

Tiger Woods is in contention for the claret jug again.

It might be because there is so much as stake, despite a legacy from his earlier years that is already in golf's record books.

Another major would have validated years of struggles. For the first time I felt like I was ready for it. I've had different parts ... being at kind of a low point in my career.

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