Monday, 16 December, 2019

Rory McIlroy Makes Quadruple-Bogey 8 in First Hole of Open Championship

The Open Championship 2019 – Day One – Royal Portrush Golf Club Darren Clarke celebrates his birdie on the first green
Adrian Cunningham | 18 July, 2019, 15:54

Rory McIlroy, another player who can expect plenty of backing from the sold-out crowd, was due to tee off at 10.09 am local time (0909 GMT) in a group with 2019 U.S. Open victor Gary Woodland and England's Paul Casey.

The journey to be named the 2019 Champion Golfer of the Year begins early Thursday morning at Royal Portrush, on the northern coast of Northern Ireland.

An hour into his round the first of the rain arrived to increase the difficulty level at Royal Portrush, hosting its first Open since 1951.

That was better than any of the other early starters could manage, with Clarke's playing partner James Sugrue, the Amateur Championship victor from Ireland, one behind after leaving his eagle attempt at the par-five second short and then holing a 30-footer at the par-three sixth.

"I texted Brooksy and I said, 'Mind if I tag along and play a practice round?"

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The biggest of those saw two new holes - the seventh and eighth - created on the Dunluce Links from land on the adjacent Valley Links, with the existing 17th and 18th holes used for the vast spectator village and media centre. McIlroy, 30, grew up in nearby Holywood, and he set the Royal Portrush course record with a 61 when he was 16.

Woods' sharpness is an unknown having not played since the US Open, and we think he needed the course to have dried out more than it has.

McIlroy may be the bookmakers' favourite but Koepka is again the man to beat, with the world number one seeking a fifth major title in his last 10 starts and a place in history. Eastern. He explains his success at majors this year.

Then he made a great pitch shot to about five feet and two-putted for 8. Playing in his fourth British Open, Grillo celebrated with a toss of the ball into the crowd.