Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The British Open

Last year's British Open (or "The Open Championship," as Brits smugly refer to it) was like most other British Opens. It featured unlikely leaders, odd bounces, and strange occurances. This year's Open begins tomorrow, and here are my predictions for this week at Royal Birkdale (in case you have not heard, Tiger will not be there):
  1. The first round leader will finish ten shots behind the winner and will be an unheralded European Tour or Asian Tour journeyman (Peter Baker, Nick Dougherty, Hideto Tanihara, etc.).
  2. Someone unexpected will win. Past winners include Ben Curtis, Todd Hamilton, and Paul Lawrie - and that's just in the last ten years. The Open always has lots of names that we Americans have not heard of because the participants come from all over the world, not just the US PGA tour (Hennie Otto? Who the hell is that?).
  3. Ernie Els will finish in the top 5. He's finished fourth or better in six of the past eight years.
  4. John Daly will shoot at least one round of 78 or higher (par is 70 this week).
  5. John Daly and Angel Cabrera will smoke four packs of cigs between them in the first round.

You didn't expect me to pick a winner without Tiger in the field, did you? Fine. I'll pick Boo Weekley. Happy now?

Fun with Names
In looking thru the names in the field, I thought it might be mildly interesting to come up with some pairings that the BBC announcers, with their dry Brit humour, could have some fun with:

The Adverb Group - Daly, Weekley, and Baddeley
"Daly struck that putt weakly and it turned out very badly."
"Baddeley and Weekley have been working out daily in preparation for The Open."

The Weather Group - Blizard, Storm, and Frost
"Storm has played well, but Blizard has been blinding."
"Frost has icewater in his veins."

The Fruit Group - Appleby and Appleyard
"Wow, that shot by Appleby was delicious."
"Appleyard's shot did not fall far from the tree."

The Barnyard Group - Horsey, and Lamb
"Horsey has a long face after that tragic treble bogey."
"Lamb's got to start cooking if he's going to make the cut."
"That was a baaaaaad putt by Lamb."
"Horsey took a run at the tricky 20-footer, but the golfing gods said 'nay'."

Fun with Photos
With apologies to the "men who look like old lesbians" website, these photos from the Open Championship website appear like they could be interchangeable with some pictures of LPGA golfers:

And this guy has the goofiest photo in the bunch - he looks like he's about 12 years old.

And last but not least, there is a golfer in the field by the name of David Smail. If I had a dollar for every time this line will be uttered in his proximity this week, I think I'd be a fairly rich man.

"Fifty bucks the Smail kid picks his nose."

Enjoy the tournament this weekend.

Go Boo!

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