Hoylake, July 24 :

Tearful Tiger Woods won his 11th major championship with a masterly display of controlled shot-making at the British Open today.

Overcome with emotion after tapping in his final putt, he dedicated his victory to his father Earl, who died from cancer in May.

Woods started the day with a one-stroke lead and had no fewer than 14 big name players breathing down his neck within five strokes of his lead. But only Chris DiMarco got a sniff of an upset, closing to within one stroke early on in the back nine before Woods shifted ruthlessly into top gear. The 30-year-old American won by two strokes with an 18-under-par total of 270, two clear of DiMarco in second who closed with a 68. Ernie Els was third a further three strokes back after coming in with a 71.

DiMarco, who had his own family tragedy coming into the tournament following the sudden death from a heart attack of his mother Norma, said Woods was “a hard guy to catch.”

The win drew Woods level on 11 with the legendary Walter Hagen as second equal on the all-time list

of major championship winners. Hagen reached that mark at the 1929 British Open. Only Jack Nicklaus now lies ahead of him with his haul of 18 majors being the Holy Grail that Woods’ entire career is based on surpassing.

It was also the first back-to-back win in the British Open since Tom Watson in 1982/83 and confirmed that Woods is back at the helm after the nine-week break he took from the game to mourn his father.