The Open 2015: Who is Dustin Johnson - the man without the major

A profile of American golfer Dustin Johnson

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The Independent Online

As a player who has never won a major, Dustin Johnson will feel that surely now is his time. The American has regularly featured in the top 10 of the Official World Golf Rankings and reached a high of 3rd earlier on in the year, but like the deserving Lee Westwood, his first major title continues to elude him.

Currently tied for first with England’s Danny Willett, Johnson stands at nine under and is one shot ahead of second place Paul Lawrie. The 31-year-old has yet to have completed his second round after the tournament was suspended yesterday due to bad weather. Following this morning’s delays too, Johnson will be itching to get onto the course in a bid to extend his lead.

Johnson came closest to his first major victory earlier on in the year after he finished second to Jordan Spieth at the US Open. The tournament was his for the taking as he approached the 18th on the final day but a double putt miss handed Spieth the hole and the title.

 

After what can only have been an excruciating loss, Johnson will be desperate to put the experience behind him and secure his first major at this weekend’s Open.

Johnson turned professional in later 2007 and recorded his first PGA Tour win at the Turning Stone Resort Championship in October 20008. Four months later, he won his second event at the AT&T Pebble National Pro-AM and by the end of 2009 season ranked 15th on the PGA Tour money list.

In 2010 he finished fifth at the PGA Championship having held a one-shot lead entering the final hole. But after appearing to bogey the hole and then being struck with a two-stroke penalty, Johnson missed out in his first big attempt for a major.

One year later Johnson earned his best finish at the 2011 Open Championship after ending tied for second with Phil Mickelson, three strokes behind champion Darren Clarke. At that point in his career the result marked the third time that Johnson had been part of the final Sunday group at a major championship. Victory, it seems, has always been just out of reach.

His loss at the 2015 US Open will have reaffirmed this and if Johnson enters the Open’s final round as the tournament leader, questions will be inevitably raised over whether or not the American can keep his nerve.

After the 2015 US Open, Johnson said: "This is why I play the game of golf, to get a chance to win the U.S. Open on the last hole…It just didn't work out.” Given his convincing performance so far, Johnson will be praying that his luck finally changes.

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