Strange to return after three-year absence

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The Independent Online
Curtis Strange will end a three-year absence by playing in the Open at St Andrews, where he holds the course record. Strange has not contested the Open since he missed the cut at Muirfield three years ago.

The most prominent of a handful of American players who have often skipped the Open in the past decade, Strange has had a change of heart.

"I'm exempt. I need to go," he said. "It's a major championship. I'm going to go the next four or five years."

Strange, twice a winner of the US Open, denied his new-found attraction to the Open had anything to do with the deal he has signed to do commentary for American television.

"It sounds like a package deal, but it's really not. I was going to go anyway and ABC said: 'Since you're going, can we talk?' I'm going to play golf and when I finish I'll do a little commentary. I'm not going to do TV and play a little golf on the side. That's what I want to get straight."

Strange's decision to play this year's Open no doubt was made easier by the venue. His course-record 62, set at the 1987 Dunhill Cup, still stands.

The Welshman Brian Huggett narrowly failed to snatch victory from Italy's Ronato Campagnoli in the International German Seniors tournament in Idstein, Frankfurt, yesterday.

Huggett, winner of the Windsor Senior Masters in April, shot a five-under- par 67 to finish two shots adrift of Campagnoli, who hit a 71 for an eight- under-par 208 and his first overseas victory. His fellow Italian Alberto Croce was joint second with Huggett.

Laura Davies made a brief charge in the third round of the US Open in Colorado. She claimed four successive birdies in her 69 but finished on 214 - nine strokes off the lead.