With Tiger Woods an incredible prohibitive favorite to win the 2009 British Open, betting houses were scrambling to come up with parlay bets to fill the void and attract some action. I doubt if any of them came up with the scenario of Tom Watson leading the thing at the halfway mark and Tiger Woods reading Golf Magazine on his private jet home, looking for swing tips. Legendary Old Tom Morris was 46 when he won the the last of his Open Championships. What does that make Watson at 59? Fill in adjective here _____. Then again, Watson has five claret jugs, which aside from making him an expert in links golf, affords him more jugs than my first strip club encounter. That would make his chances better than any 59 year old on the planet.
Woods' would have spent the day in the woods at my course. Be that as it may, he struggled mightily off the tee, which sealed a fate no one could rally from. His tee ball on the 8th hole was a 200 yard balloon right followed by a tee shot on the 9th that went righter than Reagan. That ball was was ultimately not found and just added to the calamity of errors that described his round today. I kind of enjoyed the fact that even the world's best player has days when he can't, for the life of him, hit it even remotely straight. Don't feel too bad though. He's still a kabillionaire with two babies and a Swedish model waiting for him with open arms. The only one that should be worried might be Hank Haney. I jest. The only problem with Woods' swing is consistent execution. I'm no teaching pro, but I noticed that he seemed to take a pronounced dip on his downswing, especially with the longer clubs. Unfortunately, I don't expect Tiger to be reading this article.
Watson survived five front nine bogeys to post an even par 70. After a reported pep talk by playing partner Sergio Garcia, he proceeded to blow up the back nine, playing the final 10 holes in 4 under par. The exclamation points came when he netted a 75 ft. bomb of a putt on the 16th hole, then verified it on 18 with a 45 footer. “I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t think I could win,” Watson said. Nuff' said I reckon. That left him tied with Steve Marino, whose superb 68 in blustery conditions, was overshadowed by Watson's effort. Don't look now Tom, a host of players are within striking distance going into moving day. Mark Calcavecchia is one back at -4 and the group of Fisher, Goosen, Jiminez, Vijay Singh, and Kenichi Kuboya are knotted at -3.
Unfortunately this Average Golfer will be moving tomorrow as well. I'll be driving to a wedding in Connecticut during the telecast of round three. As luck would have it, I'll be returning at a similar time for round four. You'd think my family would have at least a modicum of consideration when planning their events. It's not like the schedule for the Open Championship was announced last week!
Enjoy the rest of the Open Championship where I cannot. I'll live vicariously through y'all and pretend to have a good time.