Rose and Stenson head-to-head for the first Olympic Golf medal in 112 years

Henrik Stenson (R) of Sweden congratulates Justin Rose of Great Britain as Rose celebrates winning in the final round of men's golf at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
Henrik Stenson (R) of Sweden congratulates Justin Rose of Great Britain as Rose celebrates winning in the final round of men's golf at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

The history of the Olympic Games is full of dramatic, emotional and beautiful moments that took place in finals. Every week, relive the most incredible finals you can remember on video. This week, we look at the battle for golfing gold at Rio 2016.

The deets

  • Men’s Golf Individual Stroke Play, Rio 2016 Olympic Games
  • Olympic Golf Course, 14 August 2016

The background

The fourth and final day of the Rio 2016 individual men’s golf saw the first Olympic Golf champion in 112 years to be crowned.

The first three days had seen Brit Justin Rose, a clear favourite for a medal, leading the competition and as play begun on the final day he was -12 under the par. The 2013 US Open winner had also grabbed the spotlight by sinking the first hole-in-one in Olympic history.

However, his good friend Henrik Stenson of Sweden was right behind him with -11 under par while Australian Marcus Fraser was third with -9 under par.

Justin Rose gives Olympic history first hole in one
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Key moment

At the end of 13th hole, leads changed hands for the first time of the day with Stenson one stroke ahead of Rose. Stenson was -15 under par whereas his Ryder's Cup partner was -14.

But suddenly, Stenson felt back pain with his thoracic spine locked up. He would receive physiotherapist treatments while on the course.

Stenson could not surf on his momentum after the 14th hole, where he did a bogey, while Rose finished with a par. They were tied.

The outcome

Even though Stenson produced a great form until the end, he couldn't follow the pace set by Rose. The British golfer won Olympic gold with -16 under and two strokes ahead of Stenson who claimed silver.

"When I got down in Rio and experienced the whole vibe of the Olympic Games, I've just been really excited," said Rose. "That was a great fight with Henrik, a good friend of mine. It's a world-class win."

However, it was American Matt Kuchar who made a great comeback, coming from seventh place to clinch Olympic bronze.

A month and a half later, Rose and Stenson reunited as part of Team Europe for the Ryder's Cup - won by Kuchar's United States team.

Stenson went on to be named as the 2016 European Golfer of the Year, after his win at the British Open and silver in Rio.

As of 31 August 2020, Rose would be the second replacement player for Great Britain at Tokyo 2020 while Stenson has almost secured his ticket due to his Tokyo 2020 Olympic Ranking. It will be difficult for Kuchar to qualify for the Games as thirteen Americans are ahead of him in world ranking.

For Rose, if he can make the team, Tokyo 2020 will be a chance to earn his second Olympic gold medal.

"The Olympics has been a huge gift in my career. It's something that I've been so proud of and it was so fun to be a part of. The opportunity to win another one would be huge," he told Skysports back in March.

"It's something that's really resonated with golf fans. I've been announced on the first tee for the best part of four years as Olympic champion and it definitely warms the insides every time I hear it."

Men’s Golf Individual Stroke Play, Rio 2016
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