The Open 2015: Who is Zach Johnson - the man in contention to win at St Andrews

A profile of American golfer Zach Johnson

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The Independent Online

With the tournament having resumed this morning, America's Zach Johnson faces a difficult day ahead of him with strong winds of up to 40mph buffeting the course and players.

The 39-year-old has so far kept up with the pace of the tournament scoring a 66 and 71 respectively. Johnson is still in contention for his second Major standing at seven under and two shots behind tournament leaders, Danny Willett and fellow American, Dustin Johnson.

The American has remained an ever-present name within the sport over the last ten years or so but has yet to have recreated his success of 2007 when he clinched his first major title at the Masters in Augusta.

 

Winning by a margin of two strokes over Tiger Woods, Retief Goosen, and Rory Sabbatini, Johnson’s victory at Augusta took him from 56 in the world rankings to 15. He became the first ever player outside of the top 50 to win the Masters in the history of the rankings.

From there, Johnson went on to record his third victory on tour at the 2007 AT&T Classic and subsequently moved to a career-best 13 in the world rankings.

He moved up into the top ten for the first time in his career after a playoff victory against Tiger Woods at the Northwestern Mutual World Challenge before going on to capture his 11 career victory at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in January 2014. On the back of these two wins, Johnson reached a career high 7 in the Official World Golf Rankings.

But having since slipped down to 28, Johnson will be keen to correct this. The American will surely recognise that his performance so far in this weekend’s Open has put him in good stead to mount a bid for his second major title and move back up the rankings.

Johnson’s best result at the Open came in 2013 at Muirfield but already he looks on course to top that currently standing tied for fourth alongside Louis Oosthuizen, Adam Scott, and Marc Warren.

In an interview with ESPN yesterday, Johnson admitted that his position is “favourable” but with the extra consideration of strong winds he added that today is “not going to be easy”.

Follow the latest news, scores and updates from The Open here.

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