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The 1990 U.S. Open was the 90th U.S. Open, held June 14–18 at Course No. 3 of Medinah Country Club in Medinah, Illinois, a suburb northwest of Chicago. Hale Irwin became the oldest U.S. Open champion by defeating Mike Donald at the 91st hole, the first in sudden-death, after the two tied in the 18-hole Monday playoff.[1][2] It was Irwin's third U.S. Open title, with previous wins in 1974 and 1979.[3] Implemented decades earlier, it was the first use of sudden-death in the U.S. Open; the last tie in a playoff was in 1946. Sudden death was needed again in 1994 and 2008.

1990 U.S. Open
1990OpenLogo.jpg
Tournament information
DatesJune 14–18, 1990
LocationMedinah, Illinois
Course(s)Medinah Country Club,
Course No. 3
Tour(s)PGA Tour
Statistics
Par72
Length7,195 yards (6,579 m)
Field156 players, 68 after cut
Cut145 (+1)
Prize fund$1,200,000
Winner's share$220,000
Champion
United States Hale Irwin
280 (−8), playoff
← 1989
1991 →
Medinah is located in the United States
Medinah
Medinah
Location in the United States
Medinah  is located in Illinois
Medinah 
Medinah 
Location in Illinois

It was the third U.S. Open at Medinah, which previously hosted in 1949 and 1975. It later hosted the PGA Championship in 1999 and 2006, and the Ryder Cup in 2012.

Irwin was without a PGA Tour win in five years and 11 years removed from his last U.S. Open victory in 1979; he received a special exemption from the USGA to enter the tournament. Irwin began the final round in a tie for 20th place, four strokes back of leaders Billy Ray Brown and Donald. Playing well ahead of the leaders, Irwin fired a round of 67, which included a 45-foot (14 m) birdie putt at the 72nd hole. After the putt dropped, he provided the championship with its enduring image as he took a "victory lap" around the green, high-fiving spectators.[4] Irwin, however, had not won the championship yet as there were still golfers on the course with a chance to overtake him. Donald made par saves from 35 feet (11 m) on the 12th and from 15 feet (5 m) on the 14th before making bogey at the 16th. A two-putt par on the last tied him with Irwin, forcing an 18-hole Monday playoff. Brown and Nick Faldo finished a stroke out of the playoff in a tie for third place.

In the playoff, Donald took a two-shot lead to the 16th tee. Needing a birdie, Irwin responded with a brilliant 2-iron approach and sank the putt to get within one. After both players parred the 17th, Irwin made par at the last, giving Donald a chance to win the championship. His par putt, however, narrowly slid by, implementing sudden-death for the first time in U.S. Open history. (Previous playoff ties went on to play additional full rounds, the last of which was in 1946.) Irwin needed just one more hole, recording a birdie at the par-4 1st to win the championship.

At 45 years and 15 days, Irwin became the oldest winner of the U.S. Open, surpassing the record set in 1986 by Raymond Floyd by fifteen months. The oldest winner of a major is Julius Boros, 48 at the PGA Championship in 1968.

Curtis Strange attempted to win his third consecutive U.S. Open; he began the final round just two off the lead, but a final round 75 dropped him back to 21st place. Amateurs Phil Mickelson and David Duval made their major championship debuts, finishing in 29th and 56th place, respectively.

Scoring conditions were ideal throughout the week, with a record 39 under-par rounds in the first round and 47 in the second. A total of 28 players finished the tournament under-par, a new U.S. Open record.

Contents

Past champions in the fieldEdit

Made the cutEdit

Player Country Year(s) won R1 R2 R3 R4 Total To par Finish
Hale Irwin   United States 1974, 1979 69 70 74 67 280 −8 1
Fuzzy Zoeller   United States 1984 73 70 68 73 284 −4 T8
Larry Nelson   United States 1983 74 67 69 75 285 −3 T14
Scott Simpson   United States 1987 66 73 73 73 285 −3 T14
Curtis Strange   United States 1988, 1989 73 70 68 75 286 −2 T21
Jack Nicklaus   United States 1962, 1967,
1972, 1980
71 74 68 76 289 +1 T33
Andy North   United States 1978, 1985 74 71 71 76 292 +4 T51
David Graham   Australia 1981 72 73 74 79 298 +10 64

Missed the cutEdit

Player Country Year won R1 R2 Total To par
Hubert Green   United States 1977 71 77 148 +4
Tom Watson   United States 1982 74 75 149 +5
Raymond Floyd   United States 1986 77 77 154 +10

Source:[5]

Round summariesEdit

First roundEdit

Thursday, June 14, 1990

Place Player Country Score To par
T1 Scott Simpson   United States 66 −6
Tim Simpson   United States
Jeff Sluman   United States
T4 Mike Donald   United States 67 −5
Steve Jones   United States
T6 Mark Brooks   United States 68 −4
John Huston   United States
T8 Emlyn Aubrey   United States 69 −3
Billy Ray Brown   United States
Hale Irwin   United States
Bob Tway   United States

Second roundEdit

Friday, June 15, 1990

Place Player Country Score To par
1 Tim Simpson   United States 66-69=135 −9
2 Jeff Sluman   United States 66-70=136 −8
3 Mike Donald   United States 67-70=137 −7
4 Mark Brooks   United States 68-70=138 −6
T5 Hale Irwin   United States 69-70=139 −5
Scott Simpson   United States 66-73=139
T7 Billy Ray Brown   United States 69-71=140 −4
Jim Gallagher, Jr.   United States 71-69=140
John Huston   United States 68-72=140
Ian Woosnam   Wales 70-70=140

Amateurs: Duval (E), Mickelson (+1).

Third roundEdit

Saturday, June 16, 1990

Place Player Country Score To par
T1 Billy Ray Brown   United States 69-71-69=209 −7
Mike Donald   United States 67-70-72=209
T3 Mark Brooks   United States 68-70-72=210 −6
Larry Nelson   United States 74-67-69=210
Tim Simpson   United States 66-69-75=210
Jeff Sluman   United States 66-70-74=210
T7 Larry Mize   United States 72-70-69=211 −5
José María Olazábal   Spain 73-69-69=211
Craig Parry   Australia 72-71-68=211
Mike Reid   United States 70-73-68=211
Curtis Strange   United States 73-70-68=211
Fuzzy Zoeller   United States 73-70-68=211

Final roundEdit

Sunday, June 17, 1990

Place Player Country Score To par Money ($)
T1 Hale Irwin   United States 69-70-74-67=280 −8 Playoff
Mike Donald   United States 67-70-72-71=280
T3 Billy Ray Brown   United States 69-71-69-72=281 −7 56,878
Nick Faldo   England 72-72-68-69=281
T5 Mark Brooks   United States 68-70-72-73=283 −5 33,271
Greg Norman   Australia 72-73-69-69=283
Tim Simpson   United States 66-69-75-73=283
T8 Scott Hoch   United States 70-73-69-72=284 −4 22,236
Steve Jones   United States 67-76-74-67=284
José María Olazábal   Spain 73-69-69-73=284
Tom Sieckmann   United States 70-74-68-72=284
Craig Stadler   United States 71-70-72-71=284
Fuzzy Zoeller   United States 73-70-68-73=284

Amateurs: Phil Mickelson (E), David Duval (+5).

ScorecardEdit

Final round

Hole 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Par 4 3 4 4 5 4 5 3 4 5 4 4 3 5 4 4 3 4
  Irwin −3 −2 −2 −2 −2 −2 −3 −3 −3 −3 −4 −5 −6 −7 −7 −7 −7 −8
  Donald −8 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −9 −8 −8 −8
  Brown −7 −7 −7 −7 −8 −8 −6 −7 −6 −6 −7 −7 −7 −7 −7 −6 −7 −7
  Faldo −5 −5 −5 −5 −6 −6 −6 −6 −6 −6 −7 −7 −7 −8 −8 −7 −7 −7
  Brooks −6 −6 −5 −5 −5 −4 −4 −4 −5 −5 −5 −6 −5 −5 −4 −4 −5 −5
  Norman −2 −2 −2 −2 −3 −4 −4 −5 −5 −6 −6 −6 −7 −6 −6 −6 −5 −5
  Simpson −6 −6 −6 −6 −6 −5 −5 −5 −6 −6 −6 −6 −5 −5 −5 −5 −5 −5
  Nelson −6 −6 −6 −4 −5 −3 −3 −2 −2 −2 −3 −3 −2 −1 −1 −2 −3 −3
  Sluman −6 −6 −6 −5 −4 −4 −4 −4 −4 −3 −4 −4 −4 −4 −3 −3 −3 −3

Cumulative tournament scores, relative to par

Birdie Bogey Double bogey

Source:[6]

PlayoffEdit

Monday, June 18, 1990

Place Player Country Score To par Sudden
death
Money ($)
1 Hale Irwin   United States 74 +2 3 220,000
2 Mike Donald   United States 74 +2 x 110,000

  • Irwin and Donald tied in the 18-hole playoff at 74 (+2).
  • The sudden-death playoff began on hole #1 (385 yd., par 4), which Irwin (3) birdied and Donald (x) did not.[7]

ScorecardEdit

Hole  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9  10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Par 4 3 4 4 5 4 5 3 4 5 4 4 3 5 4 4 3 4
  Irwin E E E E +1 +1 +1 +1 +2 +2 +3 +4 +4 +3 +3 +2 +2 +2
  Donald −1 E E +1 +1 +2 +2 +2 +1 +1 +2 +2 +2 +1 +1 +1 +1 +2
Sudden-death Playoff
  Irwin −1
  Donald x
Birdie Bogey

Source:[8][9]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Parascenzo, Marino (June 19, 1990). "Irwin rules U.S. Open". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. 27.
  2. ^ Bunch, Ken (June 19, 1990). "Irwin triumphs in duel at Open". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 1, part 2.
  3. ^ Swift, E.M. (June 25, 1990). "Hail, Irwin". Sports Illustrated. p. 16.
  4. ^ "The 10 Best Duels in U.S. Open History". Golf.com. Archived from the original on May 8, 2009. Retrieved March 18, 2009.
  5. ^ "1990 U.S. Open". databasegolf.com. Retrieved June 21, 2012.
  6. ^ "U.S. Open History". USGA. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
  7. ^ Hackenberg, Dave (June 19, 1990). "Irwin's dream indeed comes true". Toledo Blade. (Ohio). p. 23.
  8. ^ "Irwin revises U.S. Open history". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). Associated Press. June 19, 1990. p. C1.
  9. ^ "U.S. Open - playoff cards". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). Associated Press. June 19, 1990. p. C4.

External linksEdit