TULSA, Okla. — Padraig Harrington, the 2007 British Open champion, made a late charge Thursday and is in the hunt for a second straight major championship. He made three consecutive birdies on the back nine to shoot a one-under 69.
After his round, Harrington said his victory at Carnoustie had given him confidence.
“You feel like you’ve won one, you can win two,” he said. “I also feel that there’s a certain level of adrenaline coming on from having won in a certain level and a certain high from it. I haven’t hit a wall as of yet.”
His playing partners, Masters champ Zach Johnson and U.S. Open champ Angel Cabrera, did not do as well. Johnson’s four-over 74 included an eagle and two double bogeys, but that was nothing compared to Angel Cabrera’s spectacular implosion on the par-3 6th.
Cabrera was even par as he stepped to the tee box. His shot landed in a hedge that also served as an out-of-bounds barrier. Cabrera argued with a rules official about whether his ball was in play but eventually went back to the tee box to hit again.
His next shot was nearly identical to the first and also went out. His third tee shot came up short and rolled back into a water hazard in front of the green. He took a drop, pitched on and three-putted for a 10.
Even after his septuple-bogey, Cabrera was still arguing over the ruling on his first shot. He left the sixth at seven over, bogeyed the next two holes and shot an 11-over 81.
“His whole tournament finished on one hole,” said Harrington. “And he was playing lovely golf up to that. That’s the nature of major golf.”