Teshima Relishing Old Course Opportunity

Taichi Teshima, Scott Strange, Tadahiro Takayama and Shinji Tomimura have qualified for The Open.
Taichi Teshima, Scott Strange, Tadahiro Takayama and Shinji Tomimura have qualified for The Open.

Okayama, Japan: Taichi Teshima won the Gateway to The Open Mizuno Open, earning a place in the 144th Open at St Andrews along with fellow-Japanese Shinji Tomimura and Tadahiro Takayama and of Australian Scott Strange .
A final round three-under-par 69 at JFE Setonaikai Golf Club took Teshima to 15-under-par for the championship and gave him a two-shot victory over Strange who finished as runner-up.
The victory is the 46-year-old’s eighth win on the Japan Golf Tour and he is now set to make his third appearance at The Open after playing in 2001 at Royal Lytham & St Annes and 2002 at Muirfield.
“It’s been 13 years since I last played in The Open. The Old Course at St Andrews is really very special. It has such a great history and I am really looking forward to playing there in July,” said Teshima.
Strange carded a one-under 71 to close out the championship on 13-under. The 38-year-old from Perth has won twice on both the European Tour and the Asian Tour and has now secured a second appearance at The Open after making his debut at Royal Birkdale in 2008.
Strange said: “I have played the Old Course a few times at the Dunhill Links but never The Open. Last time in 2008, I played under the duress of my sister passing away so I don’t really recall too much. For this trip though I’ve already had my mate over there texting me all week: ‘You have got to get into The Open because I’m on your bag!’ So I’m really looking forward to it.”
Tomimura carded his second consecutive five-under 67 in the final round to finish on 11-under alongside compatriot Takayama.
The 24-year-old from Okinawa earned his best finish on the Japan Golf Tour this week and will make his Major championship debut at the Home of Golf from July 16-19.
Takayama posted a two-under 70 to secure his fourth start in The Open. The five-time Japan Tour winner played in the 2011 Open at Royal St George’s and the 2012 Open at Royal Lytham & St Annes with his best finish in golf’s oldest championship coming at St Andrews in 2005 where he finished tied 23rd.

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