The first Open to be held in Northern Ireland since 1951 produced a local winner as Shane Lowry prevailed by six shots at Royal Portrush.
‘I knew I was home and hosed down 18. I let myself enjoy it and it was incredible walking down 18, they were singing and going mad. I could not believe it was happening to me,’ said Lowry, who won the 2009 Irish Open as an amateur.
The partisan home crowd burst into song as they sung their hero to victory.
‘I suppose I didn’t even know going out this morning if I was good enough to win a Major. I knew I was able to put a few days together. I knew I was able to play the golf course.
‘I just went out there and tried to give my best. And look, I’m here now, a Major champion. I can’t believe I’m saying it, to be honest.’
The 32-year-old became the second player from Ireland to win The Open, one that he always dreamed of doing especially as he followed in Padraig Harrington’s footsteps.
‘Look, I’m Irish. I grew up holing putts back home to win the Open. It was always the Open, wasn’t it?
‘I watched Paddy [Harrington] win his two Opens. I didn’t even know him back then. I’m obviously very good friends with him …
‘Like you go into Paddy’s house and the Claret Jug is sitting on the kitchen table, and I’m going to have one on my kitchen table, as well.’
Lowry moves to 17th in the latest Official World Golf Ranking, his joint-best ever.