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Journeyman Marcel Siem a surprise British Open contender

You can’t wipe the smile off Marcel Siem’s face. And don’t get in the way of one of his celebratory fist pumps.

The 41-year-old German, who wears his hair in a tight man bun, is 6-under and in a tie for seventh place, five shots behind leader Louis Oosthuizen entering the weekend, putting himself in an unlikely position to win.

He’s playing in his first British Open since 2015 and only got into the field by winning a Challenge Tour event on Sunday. He has been fist-pumping his way around the golf course for two days, soaking in the adulation of the spectators.

“Last week, I couldn’t even imagine to win,’’ he said. “I tried to win last week and achieve something very special that gave me a big boost. This is a new week. My daughter, yesterday she said, ‘Daddy you have to win this week as well.’ These are kids. I’ll try to stay as calm as possible.

Marcel Siem
Marcel Siem
Getty Images

“It’s going to be huge now, going to be a lot of crowds and the pressure will be high. I will do my best to do the same I did last week. I’m playing well. I won last week. I have to stay humble. I lost my [European Tour] card. I’m coming from nowhere and I will definitely try my best to compete, but I can’t give any predictions. I’m very calm at the moment, focused. My game is there.’’


Jonathan Thompson, a 6-foot-9 Englishman, had a hole-in-one on the 16th hole. Thompson was 1-over and on the cutline before the shot and walked off the green 1-under, which helped him make the cut.

“It’s just phenomenal — the roar, the shot, everything about that hole, it’s indescribable really,’’ Thompson said.

*** Matthias Schmid carded a 65, tying the lowest round ever shot by an amateur at the British Open. The 23-year-old German had five birdies without a bogey.


Defending champion Shane Lowry, the 2019 winner, rallied to make the cut, with a 65 to get to 4-under.

“Obviously, I was going out today on the cut mark,’’ he said. “I knew the cut was probably going to be 1-over maybe. I saw Collin [Morikawa] got 9-under this morning, which you know is a difficult situation when you’re going out to not try and force it or get too ahead of yourself. I played lovely golf.’’

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