The British Open, excuse me, The Open Championship, has officially started. Ian Poulter was criticized earlier this week for referring to the championship as the “British Open,” rather than by its official name or simply, “The Open,” as everyone else in the world aside from Americans calls it. His response to the scrutiny was nothing short of amusing: “I did say it the other day, I got caught up on it, I suppose. So, sorry, the Open Championship…Does it really matter?” Being that he’s British, it’s just funny. When I was studying abroad in London in the summer of 2003, I went to the Open in Royal St. Georges. I actually got used to calling it that for quite a while. Of course I resorted back to my ignorant American ways.
But I digress. I just looked up when the telecast was starting – 7AM. (Are the West Coast peeps going to wake up at 4 for it? Or just stay up?) DVR is set. I’m looking forward to seeing Turnberry in hi-def. My first reaction to every photo I’ve seen has been, “WOW.” Wait, what’s that you say? It won’t be broadcasted in HD?! That’s a shame. Regardless, I can’t wait. In fact, I’m so excited I can’t sleep. Just kidding. I’m passing out in T-30 seconds.
Without further ado, here are my favorites for the week. To clarify, I’m not necessarily saying they’ll win. Simply I’ll be looking out for them to make a strong showing.
Ian Poulter: He’s my “official” pick. I already said it over at Dogs That Chase Cars, but to cover all my bases, here it is: Let’s not kid ourselves, Tiger is going to win, but I won’t officially pick him out of principle. Way too boring. Le sigh. I’m basically picking for second here; though I’d really, really like to see Poults come through. I mean, I just like his tweets so much. Aside from that, he’s been having a pretty good year. He finished T2 at THE PLAYERS and T18 at the US Open. Surely he hasn’t forgotten how close he came last year. He’s an all around solid player – accurate, good iron player and stellar around the greens. No doubt he has the game to win Majors. If he’s rolling in the putts, watch out.
Tiger Woods: Come on now, I don’t believe anyone would leave him off their list. As I always say, I’d certainly never bet against him. In fact, I’m almost positive he’ll win. A better question might be: how much will be win by? It’s also been reported that he won’t be pulling driver often. Smart play. It worked for him three years ago at Holyake – the last time he took home the claret jug.
Rory Mcilroy: RORY, RORY!!! I really like this kid. From everything I’ve read and seen, he seems to have a good head on his shoulders. Sometimes it’s hard for me to believe he’s only 19. He conducts himself with such poise both on and off the golf course. His best finishes this year include 5th at the BMW Championship, T10 at the US Open and T20 at the Masters. Not so shabby, huh?
Zach Johnson: I got a good tip that I should go with him as my top pick – the reason being that his game suits a course like Turnberry. While I didn’t choose him to win, I trust my source and I’d look for him near the top of the leaderboard. Not to mention he finished second last week at the John Deere Classic. Overall, he’s had a stellar year with 6 top ten finishes, including two wins. Hmmm, maybe I should have chosen him as my favorite runner-up.
Geoff Ogilvy: I’ve picked him at almost every major this year. He’s been pretty disappointing, especially after he started the year so strong. I figure if I keep picking him, he’s bound to win or be in contention at some point. Let’s hope sooner rather than later. But seriously, I wouldn’t be surprised if it were this week. Because he’s been quiet for the past few months, he might just creep out of nowhere…
GO HERE to see who some of golf’s best bloggers chose. Who do you think will win? Who do you want to win? Drop your thoughts below.
[Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images]