NY holiday put on hold as Dodt set for Open tee-offSports | Jul 18, 2017
Despite a disappointing Scottish Open final-round 73 for a share of fourth place behind winner Rafa Cabrera-Bello, Dodt, 31, secured the third and last Royal Birkdale place on offer at Dundonald Links.
The strapping Queenslander denied Londoner Anthony Wall, 42, by virtue of a higher world ranking. Dodt went into the event ranked No 193 and Wall currently 245th in the world.
Rachel Dodt arrived from Sydney and into a rain and windswept Glasgow Airport on Saturday morning, but packed for a five-day holiday in summery New York. She was among the first to greet her husband when he left the Dundonald scorer's hut.
"Rachel and I were meant to be off to New York, but pretty happy to be going to Birkdale and my first major," Dodt said.
"So, I am over the moon. It's been a big goal of mine, sort of the back end of last year and this year, to play my first major, and yeah ... bring it on."
The result is Dodt's sixth top-10 finish in his 26 Tour events this season and, in some way, makes amends for last May's disappointment in leading going into the final round of the BMW PGA Championship - only to finish in a share of sixth on the famed "Burma Road" course.
And encouraging Dodt over the last few holes on the final day at Dundonald was 1995 Scottish Open winner Wayne Riley, who was working as a course commentator.
"I found myself particularly on the back nine, just a little bit mentally fatigued," Dodt said. "I felt like I used a lot of energy early on in the round, and really had to take things a bit slower, and take one step at a time a bit more, because I knew The Open spot was right in line, and had to sort of dig as deep as I could down the stretch ... So, it's great news that I've finally done it."
Dodt will now join a contingent of 11 Australians to compete at Royal Birkdale.