Another week, another hugely encouraging major championship performance from Bob MacIntyre.
Having made the cut on the number on Friday, the Scot backed up his best-of-the-day 65 on Saturday with a superb 67 to finish the week at Royal St George’s on seven-under.
As things stand, that’s looking good enough for a second consecutive top-10 finish in golf’s oldest major, following a tie for sixth on his Open debut at Royal Portrush in 2019.
For a brief moment, it looked like he might even post the clubhouse lead deep into the final round when back-to-back birdies at 12 and 13 got him to eight-under. A wayward drive that sailed out of bounds at 14 - playing as the easiest hole this week - put paid to those hopes but he salvaged a bogey and parred his way in for another strong major result.
“It’s turned out to be a good week,” said the former European Tour ‘Rookie of the Year’. “Obviously disappointed with the way I finished. We always talk about it. You’ve got to be fully committed to every shot, then if you hit a bad one, it’s just a bad golf swing. On 14, I wasn’t committed to the shot and I got punished for it but if that was going to be the bad one for the week, then I would have taken it.
“Hopefully it’s going to be another top-10 – but I want to win one of these. I feel like I’ve got the game to win an Open. I’m yet to show it but I’m young and there’s a lot of time. There’s a lot that I can learn.I’ve just got to keep doing what I’m doing. “
MacIntyre now has the luxury that every European golfer dreams of: choice.
If it’s a top-10 finish, he’ll fly out to play in next week’s 3M Open on the PGA Tour with a view to trying to sew up his playing rights for the world’s most lucrative circuit. If not, he’ll be off to Wales to play in the Cazoo Open at Celtic Manor.
“I’ll be playing next week no matter what,” he added. "Today was my worst performance tee to green. I wasn’t in control of what I was doing as much but I managed to miss it in the right spots and got some lucky breaks in the rough. You need that to keep the scores going. My face doesn’t show it yet but, once this week’s over, I’ll be absolutely delighted with the result."