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Viktor Hovland labels The 150th Open 'a good learning experience'

Viktor Hovland labels The 150th Open 'a good learning experience'

Viktor Hovland labelled his week at St Andrews "a good learning experience" after finishing in a tie for fourth at The 150th Open Championship.


The Norwegian began the final round locked alongside Rory McIlroy at the top of the leaderboard, four shots clear of the chasing pack, thanks to back-to-back 66s on Friday and Saturday.

But a Sunday 74 which contained just one birdie - at the 12th - saw him finish six shots behind champion Cameron Smith.

Hovland said: "Just a little disappointed I didn't have it today, but it was a great experience today and obviously yesterday as well. 

"The whole week was a good learning experience, and I feel like I'm going to get better from it.

"It was a little anticlimactic after the day yesterday. I was expecting I was going to hang in there for a little bit longer. 

"I just didn't have it today. Didn't hit it very good and didn't putt as good as yesterday. So it was a frustrating day.

"I just didn't hit it good enough. I maybe could have got a little bit more momentum if I made a few more putts early, but at the same time, I just made a few too many mistakes and just didn't get close enough to the pins to make any more birdies."

Joining Hovland on 14 under par was Englishman Tommy Fleetwood, who closed the tournament with a bogey-free 67.

Fleetwood also finished in a share of fourth place at last week's Genesis Scottish Open and is pleased with his recent form.

He said: "That's been a nice links season for me. It's just good to see hard work paying off and my game holding up for four days. I need to start quicker.

"It's funny how cycles go. Really the last few events, I'm just not starting off fast enough. Always on catch-up. But I'm finishing the events really, really well.


"Really, really pleased that two of my best results of the year are back-to-back in huge events. Take that and try to move forward with it. 

"Keep working, be positive, and keep moving forward. It's been a really nice couple of weeks in the summer on links courses where I've done well."

Fleetwood is already looking forward to next year's Open Championship, which will be hosted at Royal Liverpool, not far from where he grew up.

"I love The Open," he added. "Hoylake's been in my mind for a while, and that will obviously be an incredibly special time for me. 

"I'm excited, and I think I'll be doing everything I can to make sure that I'm fit and ready and my game is in the best shape it could possibly be in for that tournament.

"I always get excited about The Open, but I'm one of the lucky few that every now and again, I can have it literally a very, very close to home event. 

"My first Open was at Hoylake. So who knows, in a year's time, it might be a nice round about circle, and we'll see what we can do."

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