Scott To Putt In Special Performance In Liverpool
The Open Championship
The British Open is the oldest of the four Majors, and the third in the calendar year. Since 1979, it has always been staged on the third weekend in July at one of nine links courses, played in rotation.
Although it is often considered that American players are not at home on links courses, it is worth noting that twelve of the last nineteen British Open winners came from the USA.
This year, the tournament returns to Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake, for the twelfth time, and the first since 2006. It’s a coastal links course and so coping with the gale-force winds off the Irish Sea will be the main challenge.
But if the wind doesn’t blow, players will find it relatively easy to play as it isn’t long, the rough at the height of summer is not that thick and there are few undulations to cope with.
In The Bunker
You can’t say Rory McIlroy is having a bad season, certainly not compared to last year. Eight top ten finishes in 2014, including a scintillating victory at Wentworth is solid form. But his tendency to throw in one bad round a tournament has gone from minor irritation to serious problem.
He was at it again at the Scottish Open last week, following an opening round 64 with a 78, and until he can put together four consistently good rounds, he can’t be backed with confidence in the big events.
Adam Scott seems to have crept under the radar a little, as the world number one finds himself second in the antepost betting, but that’s good news for punters…
…and he makes more appeal than McIlroy. His 2012 meltdown may make some wary, but he’s won a Masters since then and at 34 is now at his peak. He finished in the top ten last time the British Open was held at Hoylake and he’s a good bet to finally win it at 16/1.
Sergio Garcia is the best current player never to have won a Major, but he still has time to put that right and of the four big prizes in golf, the British Open is the one he has come closest to winning, having finished in the top ten seven times, including the last time the tournament was held at Hoylake. He’s in excellent form, with three top-threes in his last six outings and is a solid selection at 28/1 to break his Major duck.
Graeme McDowell can be hard to predict, but I think he’s worth keeping on side in Liverpool after he cruised to victory at the Open de France two weeks ago. He doesn’t have a great record at the British Open, but it is worth noting that the last time the tournament was played at Hoylake, he led after the opening round. Back him at 30/1.