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It is not just the Claret Jug that is up for grabs at The Open.
The Silver Medal is awarded to the leading amateur of golf’s oldest major championship, as long as they have made the cut and finished all 72 holes.
The Silver Medal at The Open remains one of the most prestigious prizes for amateur golfers across the world and is cherished regardless of the outcome of a winner’s professional career.
The roll of honour includes some huge names in the sport, with many winners going onto become true greats of the game.
And what makes winning the Silver Medal even more special is that the recipient is awarded the prize in the same ceremony as when the Champion Golfer holds the Claret Jug aloft come Sunday at The Open.
Esteemed winners include Justin Rose at Royal Birkdale in 1997 and Matt Fitzpatrick at Muirfield in 2013. Both Englishmen went onto become US Open champions.
Rory McIlroy claimed the prize at Carnoustie in 2007 when he was just 18, before getting his hands on the Claret Jug just six years later at Royal Liverpool.
And Tiger Woods, the three time Open champion, won the silver medal at Royal Lytham just months before exploding onto the world stage with his 1997 Masters victory.
Woods and McIlroy are the only players in history to have won both the Silver Medal and the Claret Jug.
The Silver Medal was first awarded alongside the iconic silver chalice back in 1949.
Frank Stranachan was the first winner of the Silver Medal and then won the award three more times in the next four years.
There have been three amateurs in history that have won The Open, including the great Bobby Jones on three occasions (1926,1927 and 1930), but that feat has not been achieved since the Silver Medal was introduced.
To this day, the battle for the Silver Medal still adds a fascinating subplot to The Open.
It allows players competing in the field to strive for an attainable goal alongside the other amateurs and create their own slice of history in golf’s oldest major.
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