AS IT MOVES hundreds of staff to Brazil for the Olympics how the BBC must be ruing its decision to bow out of covering the Open Championship a year early given the captivating golf played by the two leading combatants, Henrik Stenson and Phil Mickelson. 2016 saw one of the most exciting Open championships for years and in marked contrast to the triumph of the virtually unknown Todd Hamilton the last time the contest came to Troon. Continue reading
OUTSTANDING GOLF BY the 15-year old Dane, Rasmus Hojgaard, saw him win the England under 16s boys’ stroke play championship played over the Royal Ashdown Old Course by six shots to claim the McGregor Trophy. Continue reading
AND SO WE welcome the year’s second great golf tournament. The US Open Championship returns to Oakmont Country Club in Pennsylvania which has hosted more Open and PGA championships than any other course in the United States of America and, depending on which camp you are in, the course is either a monument to classic design or a complete brute that will simply make the slow game that is professional tournament golf even slower. Continue reading
NOW THAT THE excitement has died down on that remarkable climax at Augusta let’s look back at what should be applauded at The Masters 2016 and what was worthy of a well aimed brickbat.
A MAJOR TOURNAMENT is not a major tournament without some drama running up to it. This year at Augusta we have had the minor sideshows of eventual winner, Danny Willett, not being certain to enter with his wife due to give birth, Chris Woods losing his clubs and Tiger Woods withdrawing; but the real excitement was provided by the news that Augusta plans to lengthen its iconic par five 13th hole (pictured above). Continue reading
TIMING IN THIS life is often vital. In Golf World magazine’s latest edition a feature asks, beneath the banner headline, ‘Has anyone seen Adam?’ if the Australian, Adam Scott, can still fulfil his potential ‘or if he has already been left behind by a new breed of champions.’ Continue reading
THE TIMES LEADER column rarely mentions golf. Yet in the March 5th edition it tells the sorry story of clubs selling their courses as land for house builders. As if golf were not under sufficient pressure the prospect of clubs, particularly those owned by local authorities, selling out to developers to meet the ever increasing demand not only for new homes but also to balance the books is possibly the most worrying trend of all. Continue reading
CURIOSER AND CURIOSER. At a time when the likes of England Golf is trying to spread the word about golf becoming more inclusive, encouraging youngsters and women into the game, a number of course owners seem to be moving in a totally different direction and producing products that only the truly mega-rich can afford. Continue reading
AS THE RAIN falls and we await the name of the latest hurricane sweeping eastwards across the Atlantic let us take a few minutes to reflect on a 10 good reasons to be cheerful over the coming months of 2016 and what promises to be a thrilling year of tournament golf. Continue reading
HAVING LOOKED AT things to delight us in the new year it is unfortunate that we shall be seeing and hearing a lot more of Donald Trump in 2016. For the purposes of this article we shall try and restrict ourselves to his possible influence in golf rather than his Presidential candidacy for the Republican party although the two tend to overlap.