Memories of Muirfield

Sport

Memories of Muirfield

TodayFM
TodayFM

10:24 PM - 9 Jul 2013



I have to get my head around trying to find a winner for next week's Open Championship before Ian Dempsey asks me on Thursday.  Luckily it's been a very good year for the Tip of the Week, so the pressure is off.  You have to take the good with the bad, and there's been enough bad over the years.  

I was at Muirfield reporting for Today FM in 2002 and it's a fantastic course.  I had my money on Ernie Els at 16/1 and I was fortunate that he prevailed in the play off because Thomas Levet had a real chance in the extra holes, which also included Steve Elkington and Stuart Appleby. 

Muirfield, which is East of Edinburgh, has always produced great champions; Nicklaus, Trevino, Watson, Faldo and Els.  It's a course that demands strong iron play and is straightforward in that it's tough but fair.  The outward nine holes are clockwise with the inward nine anti clockwise.  So one can walk around it easily enough.

What do I remember about the week?  Saturday brought this unbelievable storm and we were glad to be inside the media tent as Tiger Woods hacked to an 81 after winning the first two majors that year.  It was the first time I ever saw Woods struggle. Padraig Harrington played really well on the Saturday and but for a bogey at the last on the Sunday, he would have made the play off.  I recall Des Smyth being up there; Peter O'Malley making a charge on the Sunday, a Bollinger tent, Gary Evans playing the round of his life and Els constantly referring to his psychologist, Jos Vanstiphout, in interviews.

I'll be looking for a marquee name to win this year's Open. I don't expect a Ben Curtis style shock.  

The Open is the one tournament if you like a bet where bookmakers offer great value with each way odds, some of them up to eight places if you shop around.  It's great if you spot an outsider who can play links courses well. 

Oh, by the way, do you know that Sergio Garcia won the British Amateur at Muirfield? Just sayin'. 

 

 



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