ST ANDREWS, October 8, 2016 – Tyrrell Hatton equaled the Old Course record with a spectacular 62 at St Andrews today to take a three-shot lead into the final round of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
The 24-year-old Englishman, whose 2016 has included a fifth place in the Open Championship and a tenth place finish in the USPGA, had ten birdies – including one at the dangerous Road Hole. Many have predicted a brilliant future for Hatton and the quality of his golf suggests he will be a strong favorite to win his first European Tour title, at the Home of Golf.
Hatton said: “It’s quite clearly the best round I’ve ever had. I’ve never actually got to double digits under-par before, so I’m very pleased with that.
“Obviously I’d love to get a win. I’ll just play my game and see what happens. Hopefully, I can putt well again and we’ll have a good day. I can only try my best and what will be, will be.”
Chasing Hatton is Ross Fisher, who shot a creditable 69 at difficult Carnoustie, with Sweden’s Joakim Lagergren and South Africa’s Richard Sterne a further shot back.
Fisher said: “It was a beautiful day to play Carnoustie. It was still tricky out there. It was very firm, very fiery, but overall I’m pretty pleased with the round. There was a couple of scrappy shots. Maybe I left a couple of putts out there, but I can’t complain after shooting in the 60s for the third day running.”
The tournament, conceived as a celebration of links golf, is played over three of the world’s best known and respected links courses – the Old Course at St Andrews, the Championship Course at Carnoustie and the highly regarded Kingsbarns Golf Links.
With a prize fund of US$5 million, the championship incorporates two separate competitions – an individual professional tournament for the world’s leading golfers and a team event in which the professionals are paired with some of the most celebrated amateur golfers which creates a unique atmosphere.
Leading the Team Championship are Poland’s Adrian Meronk, who turned pro last week, and Johan Eliasch on 29-under-par.
Among the other teams who made the cut and will play tomorrow are Hatton and Jamie Dornan (27-under), Robert Dinwiddie and Dan Quayle (26-under), father and son pair Martin and Horst Kaymer (24-under), Graeme McDowell and Sir Anthony McCoy (23-under), David Horsey and Sir Ian Botham (23-under) and Graeme Storm and Damon Hill (23-under).
Dornan says it is “a terrifying prospect” to be playing alongside Hatton in the final group. “It’s just crazy. I said at the start of the week that I couldn’t expect too much of myself because I only play half-a-dozen times a year – with four of them here, including the practice round. Well, now it’s five!”
He revealed he has canceled a planned flight home to Northern Ireland tomorrow. “I’m not actually sure how I’m going to get back, but I can’t miss this! I really hope Tyrrell wins the individual tournament – he’s a great guy.”
In June 2011 the Alfred Dunhill Links Foundation was established as the official Foundation of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, formalizing years of charitable giving from which a variety of causes have benefitted. Since 2001, playing spots have been donated to more than 50 different charities to help them to raise funds. The Foundation is committed to developing young amateur golfers in Scotland and South Africa and also supports the University of St Andrews and the St Andrews Pilgrim Foundation, which refurbishes and preserves historical monuments in the town. To access the live scoring for the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, please visit www.alfreddunhilllinks.com and click on LIVE SCORING.