ST. ANDREWS, Scotland – Facts and figures for the 139th Open Championship:
Dates: July 15-18
Site: St. Andrews (Old Course)
Length: 7,305 yards, 6,680 meters
Par: 36-36 – 72
Field: 156 players (147 professionals, nine amateurs).
Prize money: Approximately $7.3 million.
Winner’s share: Approximately $1.3 million.
Defending champion: Stewart Cink.
Last year: Cink was a winner and a villain at Turnberry, easily winning the four-hole playoff and denying 59-year-old Tom Watson a chance to become golf’s oldest major champion. Cink holed a 12-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole that appeared to be good only for second place. Watson, who had won at Turnberry 34 years earlier, only needed a par on the final hole. His 8-iron went long, he putted to 8 feet and missed the putt. Cink made two birdies in the playoff to capture his first major.
Last time at St. Andrews: Tiger Woods took the lead with a birdie on the ninth hole of the opening round and never gave it back over the final 63 holes. He closed with a 2-under 70 for a five-shot victory over Colin Montgomerie. Woods joined Jack Nicklaus as the only players to win the career Grand Slam twice, and he became the fifth player to win the Open twice at St. Andrews. Nicklaus missed the cut in the final major championship of his career.
Open champions at St. Andrews: Tom Kidd (1873), Bob Martin (1876, 1885), Jamie Anderson (1879), Robert Ferguson (1882), Jack Burns (1888), Hugh Kirkaldy (1891), J.H. Taylor (1895, 1900), James Braid (1905, 1910), Jock Hutchison (1921), Bobby Jones (1927), Denny Shute (1933), Dick Burton (1939), Sam Snead (1946), Peter Thomson (1955), Bobby Locke (1957), Kel Nagle (1960), Tony Lema (1964), Jack Nicklaus (1970, 1978), Seve Ballesteros (1984), Nick Faldo (1990), John Daly (1995), Tiger Woods (2000, 2005).
Key statistic: No one has ever won the British Open more than twice at St. Andrews.
Noteworthy: Tom Watson has won the British Open on every course in Scotland except for St. Andrews.
Quoteworthy: “It will teach you everything you need to know about playing golf.” – Scott Verplank, on the Old Course at St. Andrews.