Grace records lowest round ever at men's major championship

"When you get on a run like that, you stop thinking about golf", he said.

After a masterful first 16 holes with seven birdies and no bogeys, Grace stepped up to the 17th - one of only two par-5s at Royal Birkdale - needing to shoot 1-under in the final two holes to finish with a 62.

There had been 31 rounds of 63 in the previous 441 major championships, with 10 coming in the British Open including Phil Mickelson and Henrik Stenson a year ago at Troon, but never a 62.

Grace, a South African whose best performance in a major was a third-place finish at the 2015 PGA Championship, benefitted from incredibly favorable conditions: blue skies and no wind. "I had no idea that 62 was obviously the lowest ever". I knew I was playing well and I was just in the zone.




When Branden Grace threatened, and then broke, the majors scoring record with a 62 at the British Open on Saturday, there were as many tweets about Johnny as there were about Grace. "I was just grinding, grinding, and I just couldn't believe my final round, making so many birdies". Miller's record was 33 years after Lloyd Mangrum was the first to shoot 64 in a major, at the 1940 Masters. A birdie on No. 14 presented the chance of the record as it got Grace to 6-under par, but an eccentric lip-out through the left on No. 15 seemed to foil.

It may have been one of sports' better cases of very heavy lifting without knowing, for the list Grace shoved aside is heavy with golfing distinction. Tiger Woods had a vicious lip-out in his bid for 62 in the second round of the 2007 PGA Championship at Southern Hills. First came Liang Wen-Chong in 2008 (at the age of 29), also at Birkdale, before Ashun Wu made his Open debut in 2013 at the age of 28. Gary Player, who was only the third golfer in history to win the career grand slam after Ben Hogan and Gene Sarazen, won nine majors including three Claret Jugs. He never said anything, so good on him, I suppose. "I didn't know 62 was the lowest ever, but now it makes it even more special", the 29-year-old said. His career low round in a PGA Tour-sanctioned event was a 63 at the WGC-HSBC Champions event a year ago. "Whether you guys believe me or not, I honestly didn't know", he said.

"My main thing was just trying not to bogey 18", he said. It was only after Grace made his par putt that his caddie, Zack Rasego, told him that he had just played his way into the history books.

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