2022 Open Championship Recap

150th Open Championship

The Open Championship week of golf has now come and gone, but the buzz about the action continues. If you missed The Open Championship or want to relive the action, read on for more details.

Introduction to the Tournament

2022 marked The 150th Open Championship. The championship was first held on October 17, 1860, at Scotland's Prestwick Golf Club. Only eight players took to the 12-hole course that day, and Willie Park, Sr. took home first prize, a silver-buckled leather belt called the Challenge. In 1863, the tournament awarded a purse for the first time. It amounted to £10, roughly $12, and was split among the second, third and fourth place winners. The year 1864 marked the first time the winner took home a payout. The winnings were £6, approximately $7.


Today, the Open is one of the world's four major golf tournaments. The others are the Masters Tournament, The U.S. Open and the Professional Golfers' Association (PGA) Championship. Among them, The Open is the oldest. In the U.S., the event has historically been called the British Open despite the official name simply being The Open. In recent years, U.S. media outlets have shifted to using the proper name, which has led many Americans to wonder why The Open Championship's name changed.


The location of The Open rotates between nine golf clubs in the UK:

  • Old Course at St. Andrews in St. Andrews, Scotland
  • Carnoustie Golf Links in Carnoustie, Scotland
  • Muirfield in Gullane, Scotland
  • Ailsa Course at the Westin Turnberry Resort, Girvan, Scotland
  • Royal Troon Golf Club in Troon, Scotland
  • Royal St. George's Golf Club in Sandwich, England
  • Royal Birkdale Golf Club in Southport, England
  • Royal Lytham & St. Annes Golf Club in Lytham St. Annes, England
  • Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, England 

Each year, The Open accepts any golfer who is ranked within the top 1000 golfers on the Official World Golf Ranking on the date of their entry. Not only does the event welcome professionals, but it has also been open to amateurs since 1861. In the entire history of the tournament, only six amateurs have ever topped the leaderboard, with the most famous being Bobby Jones.


In 1872, The Open began awarding the Golf Champion Trophy, better known as the Claret Jug. Its introduction occurred because winner Young Tom Morris had already taken home the Challenge Belt, and the organizers felt he should have a different prize for his second win. 

Open Championship Earnings and Payout

The Open Championship payout for 2022 was the highest that it's ever been. The total purse for the event was $14 million, just a little lower than the $15 million purse awarded for the 2022 Masters. Overall, The Open Championship payouts are the fifth highest among all events in 2022 during the PGA season. The money is split between the top 70 professional golfers. Rules state that amateurs who enter The Open Championship are ineligible to receive prize money.


Here is a breakdown of The Open Championship payout projected winning amounts:


Place Projected Payout
1 $2,500,000
2 $1,455,000
3 $933,000
4 $725,000
5 $583,000
6 $505,000
7 $434,000
8 $366,000
9 $321,000
10 $290,000


Golfers who don't make it to the top 75 still get a payday, albeit a smaller one. The top 10 pros and ties take home $10,500. The top 20 after them receive $8,500, and all other pros who compete are given $7,000.

Vegas' Odds of Winning The Open Championship

When predicting The Open Championship winners for 2022, Las Vegas oddsmakers favored Rory McIlroy to take home the prize. In the end, he was third on The Open Championship leaderboard. The Open Championship odds for the predicted top five players were:

  • Rory McIlroy +1000
  • Xander Schauffele +1400
  • Jordan Spieth +1500
  • Jon Rahm +1600
  • Scottie Scheffler +1600

Interestingly, the two golfers who topped The Open Championship leaderboard were absent from the list.

Overview of What Happened This Weekend

So who were the winners of The Open Championship? Cameron Smith took first, and Cameron Young came in second.


Smith's win wasn't a sure thing. When the golfers entered the final day, he was four strokes behind Rory McIlroy and Viktor Hovland. However, he ended up shooting 64. He wowed the crowd with five back-to-back birdies at the start of the back nine and achieved another on the 18th hole.


By finishing 20 under par, Smith matched the record-setting performance of Henrik Stenson in 2016. Smith's score is also the best ever recorded when the tournament was held at St. Andrews. Smith also has the distinction of being the first Australian golfer to win the Claret Jug since Greg Norman won it in 1993 and having golfed the fourth lowest round ever in the history of St. Andrews.


At the start of the final round, second-place winner Young seemed to be suffering from a case of nerves, as he bogeyed the first hole. However, three consecutive birdies at holes 3, 4 and 5 and another at 7 propelled him ahead. Even when he ended up bogeying with a shot that put him in the rough, Young wasn't defeated. He came back to birdie at holes 10, 13 and 14 and shot an eagle on the final hole.


The favored winners for The 2022 Open Championship suffered setbacks during the game. Rory McIlroy missed a birdie at the 17th hole, and Viktor Hovland fell from first to end up the only player in the top 10 to play an over-par round. Scottie Scheffler scored three bogeys during the front nine and never recovered.


Among the amateurs, Italy's 21-year-old Filippo Celli finished first with a five-under par score of 71.

Final 2022 Open Championship Table

For a quick recap of the final scores, here is the final Open Championship leaderboard:


open championship 2022 leaderboard

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