Golf Channel Reporter Steve Sands is in England this week for the 141st Open Championship at Royal Lytham & St. Annes. A lot of players have been getting intelligence on the golf course for this week and the early reviews are very positive even though the course is very soft due to recent rain. Brandt Snedeker said that Royal Lytham has some of the best greens he has ever seen while other players are pointing out how penal the rough is. Recent rains have made the rough very thick and players will have to be very careful off the tee.
Tiger Woods played a practice round on Sunday and played 16 holes earlier on Monday as he was able to skip 16 and 17 and go straight to 18 from the 15th green. He has been hitting about 5 or 6 chip shots per green during his practice rounds to get to know the greens and get used to the speeds. Tiger finished in the top 25 at Royal Lytham in both 1996 and 2001 but he is like pretty much every player in the field in that he is getting reacquainted with the golf course before Thursday’s first round.
The British press tends to run with stories and use a bit of exaggeration in the process. A British tabloid took Tiger’s description of some of the rough as unplayable and made that one word his description for the entire golf course. In reality, Tiger praised the golf course and said that the rough was so difficult in places that it was unplayable. Tiger’s relationship with the British press is good but he has much more trust for the American press.