Sam Locke was the only amateur of four to make the 147th Open cut, guaranteeing him a special piece of silverware – no matter what he shoots over the weekend at Carnoustie.
The 19-year-old Scot, who works part-time in the café of Paul Lawrie’s Golf Centre and earned his spot in the field by winning the final qualifying event at the Renaissance Club.
With rounds of 72 and 73, Locke finished at three-over par and faced an agonising wait to see if he would make the weekend – which at the time was one shot outside of the predicted cut line.
“I can't change it now,” he had said after his round. “I'm in at 3-over. If it's good enough, it's good enough. I've had a good week anyway, and hopefully I'm here for another two days.”
What Locke likely didn’t expect was that not only would he make the cut on the number, but fellow amateur Nicolai Hojgaard would end his day three shots outside the cut-line after a second round 76, guaranteeing Locke the low amateur honours.
It couldn’t be a more fitting venue for Locke to win this accolade. He came through the foundation run by 1999 Open Champion Lawrie, who claimed his title at Carnoustie, and was introduced to golf by his dad, who once used to coach the former champion golfer of the year.
Although he hasn’t yet responded about winning the silver medal, he did respond to a question about whether he would refocus on winning it if he made the cut.
“obviously, whether I get in or not, we'll find out,” he said when asked if he was going to now target the silver medal. “I don't know how other amateurs are getting on. But hopefully, I'm here for the next two days and just keep doing the best I can.”
And while there is no certainty about where he will finish on the leaderboard come Sunday evening, he is guaranteed to walk away with the silver medal – a feat achieved last at Carnoustie in 2007 by Rory McIlroy.
The other amateurs in the field, Yin Luxin and Jovan Rebula, finished on +12 and +16 respectively.