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Iconic Birkdale No 6: Miller joy

14 July 2017 National Sport

Last Updated: 14/07/17 2:06pm

Johnny Miller celebrates winning The Open in 1976

Johnny Miller celebrates winning The Open in 1976

We continue our countdown to The Open by taking a look back at another iconic image from the Royal Birkdale archives – Johnny Miller’s celebration after victory in 1976.

The 105th Open saw Miller storm to victory as he won by six strokes. A 19-year-old Seve Ballesteros had led through the first three rounds as he attempted to claim a first Major success, and the Spaniard looked in control as he led Miller by two shots going into the final day.

But American Miller blitzed through the last round, hitting a superb 66 to finish on nine under as Ballesteros made a disappointing 74 to tie with Jack Nicklaus for second place.

Despite Ballesteros’ disappointing final round, champion Miller later said of his win: “Obviously, it’s an important event to me, but it’s just as important that Seve was introduced to the golfing world.

“Surely, they didn’t think he was ready to win an Open Championship. It was cool for me to play with him on Saturday and Sunday. I didn’t know him from Adam and we didn’t talk much, but he just played with a sort of joyful exuberance.”

Watch The Open from July 20-23 live on Sky Sports – your home of golf.

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