Preview Golf: The Open


A look ahead to the 140th Open Championship at Royal St George's, a venue that will be hosting the event for the 14th time.

Similar Content

Browse content similar to Preview. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!



Through the gates, and just in on the right, with all England were a


golf course, this would be the golf course, this would be the


first tee. And, the 18th green. 13 times the great and the good have


strode out from this quirky corner, It can show its fear at the very


ferst or the very last. I reminder of the enduring truth of sport.


It's not how you start, but how you Endings, and beginnings. This


golfing year, the Open returns to Hello, we are all set for more


tales of the unexpected here at a breezy Royal St George Georges and


the 14th Open Championship. This orn corner of Kent has produced


cracking stories each time it has hosted the world's best golfers.


They don't come much better than the most talked about man in the


game, Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy. He hasn't yet laid hands


on the famous Claret Jug, he is the clear favourite after his runnaway


victory at the US Open last month. The creation of Rory McIlroy, Major


champion, is a story often told. The youngster with magic in his


hands. His life, it seemed, was all preparation for the victory. How do


you prepare for all that comes with I didn't expect it to be as hectic


as it was, but you know, I think always, when you do something you


sort of feel like, it's not as big a deal as everyone is making out.


It's nice. It's great to have that support. Have you had to become


harder - You have to. My life has definitely changed in the last


three weeks. And, I, yeah, I just have to... I just have to deal with


everything that goes on, you know, outside the ropes. When I'm inside


the ropes and on the golf course, I try and play the best golf that I


can. The demands on my time now, outside the golf course, are - it


will become much harder to still, you know, do or be the same person


that I was, you know, before I won the US Open. It's just - it's just


something I'm going to have deal with. I wanted to be a Major


champion. To gain a Major championship if you have to live


your life out in the public eye, you know, it's not a bad tradoff to


have. How did it come to this? Has there been a greater turnaround in


sport from collapse in a springtime. I don't think anyone...


dominating the world at the US Open? Mentally, I changed a lot on


the golf course. I learnt a lot from that final day at Augustine.


COMMENTATOR: My goodness me. combination of the Masters and the


Open last year at St Andrews and getting into contention at the PGA.


Learning something different each time from those events, it took me


a little bit of time to put all the pieces together. You know, when I


was able to do that, you know, I won the US Open. I don't feel as if


I've changed that month. -- much, mentally on the golf course I feel


I'm better. Winning one Major was never enough, you I wanted more. I


have one my first Major, let's win my second, let's win a career Grand


Slam. When I do that, let's do it again. Do you find the hype


strange? I have won three times in my career. I want to win more than


that. The way I con at -- won at Congressional, that is why the hype


has been so much. But, you know, I don't know, I don't know what way -


I think golf golf, you know, the golfing public in general are


looking for that next player to come up and, sort of, dominate.


Whether that is me, you know, we don't know yet. Hopefully, it is.


If it's someone else, you know, that's great. And, this is our home


for the next four days with a spot over looking the practice putt


green and the 1st tee. How comfortable do you think Rory is?


What expectation is he strongholding this week, Ken?


think he will be, obviously, nervous. He will be very confident.


He couldn't be more confident coming to this championship.


Winning the US Open. Played marvellous golf there. He has had a


practice rounds. Winning Majors, if you have done it you know you can


do it again. With Tiger out golf seems to need a new hero to focus


on. He has been menged mentioned in the same bracket as Tiger, that is


an awful lot to have on young shoulders, isn't it? When you talk


about jack Nicholson and Tiger Woods you are talking of the


Premier League, he is not there yet. He is a naturally gifted player. He


reminds me of Sandy Lyle. It comes to him easily. Pressure doesn't


seem to get to him. He has that ability. Not Tiger Woods yet. He


has the ability to be a great player, no doubt about it. What did


you make of the way he responded to Augustine at Congressional? Thats


with a terrific effort. Augustine could have really knocked the


wheels off his motorbike, as it were, he came fighting back. It was


exceptional, I thought. To win by eight shots. Beautiful golf. It


didn't seem to affect him. To be a great golfer you have to go with


the rough and smooth. That proved a lot to him, that is for certain


that he can do that. No first time Major winner has come back and won


the next one on the calendar since the Second World War. It is a tough


ask for Rory McIlroy. Northern Ireland has two Major winners in


the last 12 months. It is an extraordinary feat. What about


England, no Major winners for the host nation since Nick Faldo in


1996, surely, with five Englishman in the higher levels of the table


there has got to be a better chance. This to be champion. There you go.


England expects every man to do his duty. Thus spoke Lord Nelson at


Trafalgar. Nick Faldo was the last to claim the claret in 1992. With


the top two players in the world and four in the top 16 should


England expect a victory in the battle to slay St Georges?


there been such a good a feeling about English golf? Certainly not.


We have a number of people, myself, Lee, Ian and Paul Casey and Justin.


The list goes on and on. So, you know, hopefully we can breakthrough.


How fedup are you with the questions about when, with regards


to Majors and when with regards to English winners of this great


tournament? Well, you know, not really fedup. You can soon stop


them by winning this week, can't you. A number of players can


capable of pulling of a victory. I don't need to Biophilia the names.


You know who they are. It's a wide open tournament this week. No


particular favourite, I would say. It's going to be the usual suspects


of which England has quite a number in there who can win the claret and


lift the Claret Jug. Golf is an individual game. You see guys Luke


who I have grown up playing amateur golf with. I can see what he has


done to get where he has got. That is through hard work, determination,


there is no reason why other players can't follow that same line.


So many guys at the top of the world rankings which have done an


incredible job over the last 18 months. It would be fitting for one


of the guys to come through this week. It would be great to have an


English winner. Ins you have been playing golf there can't be so many


weeks going into an Open where there are so many contenders from a


home-grown perspective? Why not. I have finished top three in in five


of the last seven. That ought to win you a Major sooner or later.


Luke is coming in off the win. Westy playing well. This could be a


year. I like the English chances, for sure. It wasn't that long ago


there were one or two guys in the top 100 representing England in the


world rankings. And, you know, now it's getting frustrating if it's


two or three in the top ten. I don't even know how many we have in


the top 100. It's a lot. That's brilliant. It really. Has been a


Former Ryder Cup captain Mark James is with me. Do we make enough of


the world ranking of Donald and Westwood. Is there too much


emphasis these days on Majors? times, yes. When a guy gets to


world number one you shouldn't ask questions questions of whether he


is worth it. The fact that Donald and Westwood are one and two they


have played a huge amount of high quality golf. If you look back over


13 years, only a handful of people have been world No 16789 there have


been 30 or 40 Major winners. there anything missing from his


game, is there a case of luck? about luck. The right starting time.


A few putts go in. No-one else gets hot. You can get lucky in Majors


and very unlucky. He has been so unlucky. Luck Donald, the most


dominant player across the year. How is his game cute suited to this


course in particular? I don't know if it gets windy, I don't know how


low he can hit or whether he shapes it that well. Earlier in the year


he was down greens and regulation in the States, he moved up into the


top 50. That means the last couple of months he has been playing very,


very good golf. That will hold him in good stead here. If it is to be


a an English winner, which one? number of players from England who


could win. Obviously, Donald Westwood, cream at the moment. You


have Poulter, Casey. They are high quality. And, Justin Rose. He has


been hitting the ball well this year. Who knows. Thank you. It


doesn't get much more English than Royal St Georges, does it? This


course in 184 was the first upon which the Open was staged outside


Scotland. It really is an area that is totally fascinating in a


historical sense. We have been St George's itself has its place in


Open Championship history. It was the first course in England to host


the Open Championship. Before that had been Prestwick, St Andrews,


Muirfield came in 1892. It moved south to St George's in 1894. You


can great a close up look at the white cliffs at Dover here. They


are being washed away and eroded all the time. Ian Fleming had a


house down here. He was a member of Royal Saint Georges. The reason


that James Bond is supposed to be called 007 because Ian Fleming


liked to go up to cant Canterbury We talk about this corner of


England being a gateway to the country. Down there is a Roman fort,


where the Roman invasion in 14AD began. -- 43AD began. From the


ancient to the modern, beside the fort is a modern Castle of


invention that's the Pfizer factory, it was here they developed viagra.


I have no idea what that is but I am told it's very useful.


The Open championship adds another chapter to the long and varied


history of this corner of England and at the heart of it all the most


English of courses, Royal St George's.


One man who loved this event was Alex Hay who for 26 years sat


alongside Peter Alliss in our commentary box. Alex sadly passed


away this week and we will all miss him, but none more so than his


friend and colleague behind the microphone.


I knew Alex for more years than I care to remember. I saw him through


the phase of when he was a golf professional, I saw him arriving


when he was a club professional. He was a good companion, amusing,


entertaining, could have a temper at times but I loved him dearly and


shall miss him. But, of course, he will be mostly remembered for his


work in the commentary box with phrases like this:.


One could almost say he will need history iron now.


-- his foretree his -- his tree iron now.


There's never a day goes by for him that something wonderful doesn't


happen. What a wonderful shot that is. It


gets better and better. It can't possibly, it can! We are a


privileged couple to get to come He had the most infectious laugh in


the business, didn't he? And our thoughts are with Anne and the two


boys right now. Alex will have within thrilled with the resurgence


of European golf. Rory McIlroy has followed a trail blazed by Graeme


McDowell and Martin Kaymer. There has been a major shift in the world


game. One year ago he was the


unpronounceable outsider, now he is a familiar face, dreaming of a


double. If you can stay calm and patient and enjoy yourself, that's


a big part of Major weeks. There was mentally that belief in


yourself that helped me a lot and I am sure when I am in that position


again to win a major I know that I have done it before


and just have that belief that it People say when are you going to


win a first Major? Then the next question when are you going to win


your second? It's horrible to say a Major championship is a burden. Six


or eight months afterwards, I loved every second and played very well.


It was more as a defence of the title got near that the three or


four months leading up to that everyone wanted to talk about 2010


and I wanted to kick on with 2011. I don't put too much pressure on


myself, I just kept playing my game the way I have been playing the


whole week. There's nothing else you can say


I think I have learned about myself under pressure situations and


hopefully this week just get the game right and this golf course be


quite patient. That's what it's all about here, to grind it out, to


fight and to wait for your chance. It's not about beauty golf, it's


about scoring well. Preparation. Being prepared for anything.


Realising it's going to be a big, long tough weekend ahead, really


grinding tough golf and you have to be really mentally prepared to be


patient and be mentally prepared for a real test of golf. It does


help if you have done something before to remind yourself you have


done it, it's possible to do it again. You can get a good deal of


confidence out of that. Are there sometimes you sit there and you put


your feet up and you think I have won the claret Claret Jug? A lot of


times, you think wow, it was quite good. It was unbelievable spaoerps


and I would -- experience and I would love to be known as Open


champion again. Whoever does walk away with the Claret Jug will have


to conquer the most sourtly course on the rota. It has a reputation as


one of the most hazardous courses of them all. Ken Brown can tell us


what awaits them. Royal St George's is in perfect


condition. The players are going to love it. There's more spin than


usual so you have half a chance of playing shots out, but if you go


wide you are in the thick stuff. A real feature of the golf course


this week are these undulating fairways. Bunkers peppered around


the course, with the lovely golden sand. Look wonderful but tough to


get out of. The greens, well, they're velvet. A lovely carpet of


green grass, just about holding enough. A good shot on the fairway


you will be able to spin the balls. This week it's all about the breeze.


If the breeze is about, Royal St George's is a tiger. This week the


course is set up perfectly for the Open championship. If the sunshines


there will be good numbers, but if it doesn't it will be a brute. It


may have been an American who tamed the brute the last time. The last


five Majors have been won by non- Americans so a golfing superpower


in decline? There are 52US players on the field this week who would


refute that, the most high profile I have been around a long time. I


don't feel old but I have been around a long time. I have enjoyed


playing and competing and I feel like right now I have been able to


get my game at a level I feel as is high as it's been even though my


results have not been there. Wonderful distance control again.


love to compete and always have. It gives me an opportunity to play and


compete against the best players and try to win championships that I


have dreamt about as a kid and that fire never goes away. I will be


playing just about every week all the way through the end of


September, gives me an opportunity to get some of my best golf out and


an opportunity to play the way I know I have been playing, I just


haven't gotten the scores in the last year or so but I think it's


about to turn. Golf has become a global sport. We need good young


players and good young global players to promote the sport on an


international basis. Fowler at the 17th and on and on and on. That's


ridiculous. I feel like American golf is in good shape. We have a


lot of good young talented players, as well as older established


players who have done it year after year. I feel like American golf is


fine and our players will end up winning some tournaments but it's


important that we have good young players like Rory McIlroy. We need


these guys to step up and play. In the US we have guys like Ricky


Fowler that are coming on, a kid in college. Dustin Johnson has


something that you can't acquire, which is clubhead speed. Players


like that give international golf a strong flavour.


Jake Townsend is a star-spangled kind of guy, you will be on Radio


Five Live this week. Is the power base diminishing now, is this a


blip or major shift? There's been cycles, you have Seve, Ian Woosnam,


they were the power base. It's shifted to the Americans in the 90s


and early 2000s. It's gone back to this side of the Atlantic and it's


ready for Westwood to win, Donald to win his first and certainly you


would expect McIlroy to win a bunch of them. This is a global game now.


Is there anything that's inhibiting US golf, maybe even Tiger's


absence? Tiger has created a vacuum nobody's rushed to fill. Fowler is


the guy the Americans want to come in. I think he is a way off yet.


Glover has won the Open but hasn't contended in other Majors. Those


are the guys probably going to do it but they're going to have to


contend before they win. Thank you very much. Some of the the younger


mans you ventioned haven't won a Major yet but they're winning fans


with offcourse and ticks. This # Smash, bang, you got to hit the


ball far and the crowd goes # I want my birdies all day long,


but the bogeys go hey # You want to play with the pros


# You got to hit it in the hole now # You want to reach the top


# You got to give it all you got Honestly, what do you make of that?


Tputsy? -- gutsy? Not sure what hurt more, my eyes or ears having


to listen to that. Not my kind of music. We have just about covered


all the main contenders in our preview. What knows maybe another


300-1 shot could do a Ben Curtis on us. Let's look at how things will


transpire tomorrow. They'll be teeing off from 6.30am and these


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 65 seconds


All sorts of interactive options available to you via the red button.


If you can't be with us for all that time, then the BBC website and


5 Live will have full coverage of all the latest news. The great Seve


Ballesteros claimed this Claret Jug three times and got his first taste


of lynx golf here. The R&A have honoured him this week by putting


A look ahead to the 2011 Open, the 140th Open Championship at Royal St George's, a venue that will be hosting the event for the 14th time. English chances rest with Lee Westwood and Luke Donald, and hopes are high that one of them could become the first English winner on home soil since Tony Jacklin triumphed at Royal Lytham St Anne's in 1969.

But the bookmakers' favourite is 22-year-old Rory McIlroy, who sensationally won the US Open last month. The Northern Irishman stormed to victory to claim his first major title, breaking a host of records along the way.

Also in the show is a guide to Royal St George's, a course that is set to provide a stern test to the world's best players due to its unusual layout and quirky features.

Download Subtitles