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Last Updated: Monday, 15 August 2005, 17:15 GMT 18:15 UK
Bjorn upbeat despite major miss
The agony is clear for Thomas Bjorn after his missed birdie putt on the 18th
Denmark's Thomas Bjorn is convinced that he can end Europe's long barren spell in golf's majors.

Bjorn finished joint second in the USPGA behind Phil Mickelson after missing a birdie putt on the 18th.

"You've got to be disappointed because I gave myself a great chance. But I tried 110% and came up one shot short.

"I've taken some pretty hard knocks but I believe that I am a good player who can handle myself and do well in big championships," he said.

But Bjorn, who also missed out on the 2003 Open at Sandwich despite leading by three shots with four holes to play, refused to dwell on the missed putt at Baltusrol.

"It was on a perfect line and a foot from the hole it was going nowhere else - but somehow it stayed out," he said.

There's a lot to be said for being the last guy out there
Steve Elkington

"And I've lost to someone who is not a one-major guy, but a 10-major guy. This win is going to make it easier and easier for him to win more - and he deserves greatness."

Steve Elkington had a chance of repeating his 1995 triumph until his tee shot at the 18th hit the trees. Although he hit his third to within eight feet, the ball slipped past for the birdie chance.

He was left watching the television in the locker room to see what Mickelson would do over the climax of his round.

"There's a lot to be said for being the last guy out there. Thomas and I had a chance of birdie on the last but we didn't take it," said Elkington.

"It would have been nice to make four on 18 to put pressure on Phil rather than having a free shot at birdie. He led all week and it's a hard course to hold the lead on."

The Australian has found his way back after a hip operation and a shoulder operation over the past few years.

"I've just got myself in contention. I had the surgery on my shoulder two years ago and last year it just took me all year to get over it," he said.

"Whilst doing that, I was able to get in condition and get my mind right about playing the tour again. Because once you are out for a while, it's so hard to get your mind in the right position to play top golf."


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