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Michael Thorbjornsen, Akshay Bhatia eliminated on upset-filled day at U.S. Junior Amateur

Thursday was a day filled with upsets at the U.S. Junior Amateur. None was more shocking than Palmer Jackson’s victory over defending champion Michael Thorbjornsen.

Jackson held a 1-up lead over Thorbjornsen in their Round-of-32 match when he missed the green at Inverness Club’s par-4 18th hole. But with Thorbjorsen facing a 5-footer for birdie to force extra holes, Jackson chipped in for birdie and the 1-up victory.

“I knew I had to make that chip because he had a 5-footer for birdie and he was making those all day,” Jackson said. “It feels really good to take him out.”

A few hours later, it was Jackson who was on the other end. The incoming Notre Dame freshman led Kelly Chin, 2 up, with four holes to play before Chinn birdied three of his final four holes to force extra holes. Chinn advanced to Friday’s quarterfinals with par on the par-4 first hole.

Match-play craziness defined the day. The Round of 32 included eliminations of co-medalists William Moll, William Mouw and Ricky Castillo. Castillo’s loss was especially shocking as the incoming Florida freshman was routed by Kento Yamawaki, 6 and 5.

That set the stage for the afternoon defeats of Alabama commit Canon Claycomb and top-ranked junior Akshay Bhatia, who was upended by Preston Summerhays, the son of instructor Boyd Summerhays and nephew of Tour pro Daniel Summerhays. Bhatia tied the match entering No. 18 before missing the green and failing to get up-and-down. Summerhays stuffed his approach and two-putted for par to advance.

With Bhatia out, the new favorite becomes England’s Joe Pagdin, who defeated red-hot Maxwell Moldovan, 4 and 3, in the Round of 16.

The quarterfinal matchups are as follows:

Deven Ramachandran vs. Bo Jin

Garrett Martin vs. Kelly Chinn

George Duangmanee vs. Joe Pagdin

Austin Greaser vs. Preston Summerhays

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British Open 2019: 13 things you might not know about the history of the claret jug

There is room for debate as to whether the claret jug is the most iconic item awarded to a tournament winner in golf, a chorus of folks representing a sleepy town in Georgia likely arguing that a certain emerald blazer has an awful lot of cachet, too. Where there is no uncertainty is this: The claret jug is the best mulligan in golf history.

The trophy that has become synonymous with the Open Championship was not handed out for the first time until 1873, 13 years after Willie Park Sr. won the inaugural playing of the event at Prestwick Golf Club. In lieu of a cash prize for the winner, Park was awarded the Challenge Belt, something akin to boxing hardware made of red Moroccan leather with an oversize silver buckle and emblems adorning the front.

The belt was given to subsequent winners, but each had to return it to Prestwick’s club secretary. Tournament rules stipulated that no golfer would earn permanent possession of the belt unless they won the Open three straight years. Lo and behold, Young Tom Morris did just that in winning the Open in 1868-’70.

Without anything to hand out to future winners—no tournament was played in 1871 because of this very dilemma, according to the Open website—members at Prestwick, the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers and the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews met to come up with an alternative prize. On Sept. 11, 1872, each club agreed to pitch in £10 to purchase the celebrated trophy we think of today.

With this backstory in mind, here are 13 more things you might not know about the claret jug.

1. The claret jug actually has a formal name: The Golf Champion Trophy.

2. The original jug was made by Mackay Cunningham & Company of Edinburgh.

RELATED: A second chance for Royal Portush

3. The claret jug is 20¾ inches tall with its base and 5½ inches in diameter at its widest (the base is 7¼ inches in diameter). It weighs roughly 5½ pounds. It’s 92.5 percent sterling silver.

4. The first golfer formally awarded the jug was Tom Kidd, when he won at St. Andrews in 1873. However, his is not the first name that was engraved on the trophy. Young Tom Morris, winner of the Open for a fourth time in 1872, has his name above Kidd’s out of deference to the fact that the trophy had been commissioned but was not ready when Morris was victorious the previous year. Morris was given a gold medal, which also became an annual award given to the champion.

5. The original claret jug was awarded to 28 different golfers through 1927, when the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews decided to put it on permanent display (well, almost permanent) in its clubhouse along with the original Challenge Belt, which was donated back by the Morris Family. Since then a full-scale Champions’ replica has been presented to each winner, starting in 1928 with Walter Hagen.

RELATED: British Open prize money in 2019 includes record winning payout

6. The Open winner is allowed to keep the claret jug for a year before returning it to the R&A ahead of the next Open Championship. The R&A has turned “the return” into a highly choreographed ceremony in recent years.

7. While winners must hand back over the permanent claret jug, they do receive a full-size replica to keep and can order up to three smaller replicas.

8. Mistakenly, Tom Watson was given the original claret jug (from back in 1873) when he won the 1982 Open at Royal Troon. It was a mistaken compounded by the fact that Watson accidentally knocked the trophy off a table in his house taking a practice golf swing, denting part of it. Watson took the trophy to his basement workshop, put it in a vise and bent it back into place.

RELATED: The 13 best bets to win at Royal Portrush

9. There are three other replica jugs: one in the British Museum of Golf at St. Andrews and two others used for traveling exhibitions.

10. Prior to 1968 it was the champion’s responsibility to have his name engraved on the trophy prior to returning it. However, when Roberto De Vicenzo forgot to have it done, the R&A took the responsibility back and created the tradition of having an engraver (first Alex Harvey and now his son, Gary) on site to do the honors prior to handing the trophy to the winner each year.

Roberto De Vicenzo
R&A Championships

11. There is a typo on the jug. The engraver who put in the 1947 entry for Fred Daly mistakenly wrote Hoylake as “Holylake.”

12. There are any number of stories of winners taking the claret jug to exotic spots to celebrate their victories. Our vote for the most unusual: Henrik Stenson strapping the claret jug into a life preserver while water skiing after his 2016 victory.

13. Several champions have told stories of drinking various concoctions from the jug (it is a 19th-century design that was used to serve claret, a dry red wine from the Bordeaux region of France). But the strangest thing to inhabit the jug might have been a collection of ladybugs. Padraig Harrington promised his son, Patrick, he could put the insects into the jug after the 2006 Open win at Carnoustie. Harrington had ladybugs engraved on the replica jug that he kept.

Check out Golf Digest Schools for the best in video golf instruction


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