The week at Royal St. George’s in Sandwich, Kent, England is one Bryson DeChambeau won’t soon forget.
It began with the usual attention he attracts, since packing on the weight, since juicing up the swing, since winning the 2020 U.S. Open and since engaging in the public feud with Brooks Koepka. He has become one of golf’s primary personalities.
Then came attention DeChambeau could have done without. After shooting a frustrating 71 on Thursday, DeChambeau committed an ethical no-no by blaming equipment, declaring that his driver "sucks." Such comments, in the land of tabloid headlines and boorish-American attitudes, was like tossing gasoline on a brush fire.
The 27-year-old DeChambeau got destroyed by the press, and drew unflattering reactions from fellow players and his equipment company, Cobra. On Friday, DeChambeau issued an apology, but chose not to do a press conference, talking instead to a handful of reporters.
"I made a mistake," he told them. "I think as time goes on, I'll look at this as a growing moment for me personally, and hopefully I can make the right things going on from here on out. I was in a heated situation, and I feel really bad about it."
For his final act on Sunday, DeChambeau presented a more admirable face. He demonstrated reliance and fortitude by putting the awkward residue behind and shooting a five-under-par 65 to finish at two-under 278 for the championship. The bogey-free card featured five birdies, including three in succession at No. 12, 13 and 14. DeChambeau hit 50% of the fairways and 15 greens.
“There wasn't too much wind; it’s sunny,” DeChambeau said. “I like the sun with a small amount of wind. I played well. I was hitting the fairway today a lot, and felt pretty comfortable with the irons from 150, 130, 140 yards out.
“I struck some really nice iron shots in there and gave myself a lot of opportunities today, which I was proud of that fact.”
DeChambeau readily admits, the British Open remains a work in progress for him. In three previous starts, he had two missed cuts and tied for 51st (2018). The power game he promotes doesn’t readily translate to a seaside setting, where wind and debilitating rough can be part of the equation.
Some valuable lessons might have been learned this time, both on the course and off.
“Finishing five under is a good feat, given it's the Sunday of an Open Championship,” DeChambeau said. “And I think that I'll learn a lot from this going into next year.
“It's one of those things that, as time goes on, I'll keep learning more and more about Open Championship style golf, and one day again hopefully I can hold up the Claret Jug. That would be awesome. One of those things I'll keep learning over the course of time, but definitely was more of an accountant today.”
More Final-Round British Open Coverage From Morning Read:
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- Collin Morikawa Rallies to Win 149th British Open for 2nd Career Major Title
- Jordan Spieth Regrets Early Mental Lapses After Runner-Up Finish
- Oosthuizen Fails to Close Another Major, Slumps Into Tie for Third
- Brooks Koepka Laments What Might've Been After Strong Finish
- Shane Lowry's Two-Year Reign as Open Champ Ends Respectfully
- Bryson DeChambeau Caps Humbling Week With Final-Round 65
- Final Purse, Payouts, Prize Money Breakdown for 2021 British Open
- How Henry Cotton Captivated England at 1934 Open at Royal St. George's