However, McIlroy endured the worst possible start to the Open, finishing the front nine at five-over-par, after five bogeys in the first six holes. “But you have to realize in a 25- or 30-year career, you’re going to get some years that you’re on the good side of the draw”.
Australian Peter Thomson won his first Open title at Birkdale in 1954 and his fifth and final back here in 1965. It definitely helped. It kept me positive.
The starkest reminder of the state of his game was not so much missing three cuts in his last four tournaments.
If you’re unsure of what to call this week’s major golf tournament, that’s ok – some of the game’s top broadcasters aren’t entirely clear on the matter either. “You just never know, and if you play well, you’re going to have a chance with these other guys who are equally as capable”, he said. They did their part, I just couldn’t quite do mine.
“I love this golf course, the love affair has not changed since 2008. I’ve done the same thing for years”. “I don’t want to say that if I don’t win this, it’s going to be a huge sort of hole in my career”.
“It’s so easy to feel like you’ve disappointed them a little bit when I played the way I did, but I will try my hardest tomorrow”, he said. I just got off to such a poor start. I don’t think anybody would be.
Players had enjoyed dry and sunny conditions on the Southport links until a thunderstorm blew in late Wednesday afternoon and forced the abandonment of practice. He complained that week about the conditions and said he would rather play when it’s 80, sunny and not windy.
It’s the same deal with Manley as it is with Bland: Manley could certainly use his hot first-round finish to propel himself to a very good tournament.
However, he reached the turn in 32 by sinking a putt from 18ft, by which time Rose had joined him at the top thanks to an eight-foot birdie putt at the third. Maybe it means I can get over a bunker, but we have a plan, work on the shots we need and just relax.
“I’m in a place where I’m trying to figure out how I get back to that position where I was”, he said. “And he kind of ended up being nearly as a father figure to me in the States, which is very nice, because my parents were all the way in Spain”.
As the current crop of players who have been No. 1 over the last few years continue to fall short of the kind of dominant runs that golf grew accustomed to during the Tiger Woods era, the most perplexing in the group is Jason Day. “And what’s happened makes it even more special to be back here today playing”. And that’s before a ball has even been struck on the opening day in the battle for the Claret Jug at Royal Birkdale.