A SUMMER heatwave in 2006 welcomed the Open Championship’s return to Royal Liverpool Golf Club for the first time in 39 years in what became an emotional few days for winner Tiger Woods.
Weeks of sun had left the Hoylake links browned and baked hard and that played into the American’s hands as he adopted a no-driver policy — hitting it just once in the first round — with the ground running fast and firm.
Woods used his two-iron to devastating effect over the four rounds, laying up short of bunkers designed to catch the longer tee shots.
A second-round 65 gave him a lead he would not relinquish as his highly anticipated final-day battle with Sergio Garcia never materialised, the Spaniard crumbling in the spotlight to shoot 73 to Woods’ 67 as the world number one secured back-to-back Claret Jugs and his third in total.
It was, however, the first since the death of his father and mentor two months earlier and Woods broke down in tears on the 18th green after holing the putt which gave him a two-shot victory over compatriot Chris DiMarco.