The perfect round
16th June 1926, Sunningdale
By the time he got to Royal Lytham and St Annes his game was once again vulnerable. However, Jones opened with two 72’s and found himself tied for the lead. In those days the final two rounds were played on a Friday, allowing the club professionals to be able to return to their clubs to attend their members on Saturdays, Jones was paired with American professional Al Watrous, who lead Jones by two shots and Walter Hagan by four going into the final round.
To ease the tension at lunch time both Jones and Watrous returned to the Majestic Hotel. Jones returned to the club forgetting his competitors ticket and was refused entry, unfazed he went to a pay gate and gained entry as a spectator. After 16 holes in the final round Jones was now level, he pulled his tee shot at the 17th into some sandy waste ground, Watrous from the centre of the fairway hit to the middle of the green. Jones’s shot was blind and with the use of a mashie (the equivalent of a 5 iron today) hit the shot 175 yards directly onto the green.
Watrous was rattled which resulting in him 3 putting giving Jones the lead for the first time in the Championship. Jones made 4 at the 18th to win by 2 shots. However Hagan forever the showman needed 2 at the last to tie, sent his caddy forward to attend the flag and almost pitch his ball straight in the hole, but would take 6 and finished in fourth place. This was the first of Jones’s 3 Open titles. After sailing back to the USA on the Aquitania he was given a ticker tape reception in New York.