Open golf champion Darren Clarke went on a 13 hour drinking binge after his triumph on Sunday.

And the Northern Irishman was still imbibing right up until yesterday morning’s press conference.

Carrying his prize, the gleaming Claret Jug, Clarke rolled up at Royal St Georges in Kent yesterday morning for a media conference looking very pleased indeed.

“I've looked at the trophy all night and sort of semi-figured out it's mine," he slurred, delightfully. ??"I had quite a few pints and quite a few beers and quite a few glasses of red wine," he added. "It all continued until about 30 minutes ago."

But no he had not decanted any alcohol into the hallowed trophy.

“There’s been nothing in it overnight at all,” he explained. “I’m a little bit of a traditionalist. I love the thought of whatever being in the trophy but I’m a bit of 2-iron as opposed to rescue-that-sort-of-guy.

“I feel a bit funny about putting stuff in the Claret Jug that shouldn’t be in there, so I’m a bit more reserved as to what I should do,” added Clarke.
Clarke, 42 is the oldest Open winner since 1967.

He later flew back to Northern Ireland to celebrate as his local pub in County Antrim.

Clarke phoned his sons Tyrone, 12, and Conor, 10, at home in Portrush before going out on his bender.

“Tyrone (12), my oldest one, he was very pleased, very proud. He said he was going to tell everybody his dad was Open champion.

“My younger boy, Conor (10), wanted to know what he could spend all the money on. So there was a huge difference between the two ? but they both were very happy.”

Golf: McIlroy chasing British/US double