The Open anniversaries: Gary Player's maiden major, 60 years on
By Ali Stafford
Last Updated: 11/07/19 10:03pm
Gary Player experienced plenty of success at The Open, with this year's contest marking the 60th anniversary of his breakthrough major victory.
The South African registered nine major titles during his illustrious career, with Player claiming his first of three Open victories during the 1959 contest at Muirfield.
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Player finished fourth on debut in 1956 and posted another top-10 two years' later, although seemed out of contention 12 months later after dropping eight strokes off the pace after 36 holes.
The then-23-year-old closed the gap on midday leader Fred Bullock with a third-round 70, leaving him within four of the lead, before making a fast start during testing conditions in the round.
Six-under through 17 holes and threatening the course record, Player feared his hopes had been dashed after hitting his drive into a bunker at the par-four last and then three-putting for a double-bogey six.
Setting the clubhouse target at four under after a closing 68, Player was left sweating for over an hour to see if those in the final few groups could reach his total.
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Fred Bullock and Belgium's Flory Van Donck were in the final group and both needed a final-hole birdie to force a play-off, but both bogeyed the 18th to give Player a two-shot win.
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