Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:58 AM
British Open Recap
Editor's Note: Be sure to follow @_DanDaly on Twitter this golf season for his off-the-cuff remarks and entertaining commentary!
Dear R&A – You epically failed us all on Sunday. The one thing that separates the British Open from all the others is weather, nasty weather. The harder the conditions, the more enjoyable the British Open becomes. You are given a perfect British Open final round forecast that is set to come in right as the leaders are scheduled to tee off and what do you do? You move the tee times up two hours to avoid it? Are you kidding me? How much better is that final round if the leaders go off right at the height of wind and rain? Instead we get stuck with arguably the most boring final round of a major I can ever remember. By the time the weather became a factor it was too late.
With all due respect to Shane Lowry and the millions in Ireland celebrating into the night, that was not enjoyable. I can’t remember the last time I lost interest in a Major Championship on a Sunday with 13 holes left for the leader. More on Shane later.
Maybe the only thing more popular than golf in Ireland these days is Game of Thrones, where the show was filmed. With the British Open returning to Northern Ireland this year it only seemed appropriate to do a G.O.T themed recap to try and add something interesting to an otherwise boring tournament (and no, you don’t have to understand G.O.T. to keep reading).
Theon Greyjoy, aka Rory McIlroy – The prodigal son returns home determined to prove himself a hero only to have his “manhood” taken away from him with a quadruple bogey eight on the opening hole en route to a torturous first round 79. Despite missing the cut he still somehow became a hometown hero in the process. His back nine charge on Friday afternoon to try and make the cut was pretty special, and turning that into must watch TV isn’t easy to do. Even more impressive was his post round interview. Say what you want about the guy, he doesn’t hide his emotions, both good and bad. That Thursday round is going to sting for a long time. Unfortunately for Rory this seems to be a theme. He has won four majors so it’s not like he can’t handle pressure but it sure seems like the bigger the moment the harder the fall for Rory the past few years.
Grey Worm, aka Tiger Woods - The guy was basically invincible his whole life but now he has a weakness. His back. He was able to mask it to start the year playing in warm weather on the Southern swing, but it’s a real problem. The guy went a full month between the Masters and PGA and then did it again between the US Open and British Open. You are kidding yourself if you think that is anything other than his back. Basically at this point in his career the only chance Tiger has to win Majors is if they are played in warmer weather. Over the next five years based on the location of the PGA Championship and US Open he might have three warm weather rounds at most between them. The British is a total crap shoot but let’s say he gets two out of five at best? Giving him three warm weather Masters as well, that is maybe 8 of the next 20 Majors Tiger will have a chance to compete with his back. As much as it pains me, that doesn’t bode well for catching Jack. But we will always have the 2019 Masters, and that alone was worth the comeback.
Aerys Targaryen "the Mad King", aka Phil Mickelson – The guy has lost his mind and his golf game along with it. The guy went on a six-day fast that involved nothing but water and a "special coffee blend" that resulted in losing 15 pounds. How in the hell does that help you before a Major Championship?! Well, turns out is doesn’t. He still shot eight over, he just did it in smaller pants.
Ned Stark, aka Adam Scott – Can’t say I saw that one coming. I, along with most, thought Adam Scott would be a main character right up until the head. Instead dude goes 78-73 and is an early exit.
Tiger – Phil – Rory – Scott combined to shoot a collective 25 over par and all miss the cut. That is simply mind boggling to me. Phil and Tiger have played in 83 Majors together and this was the first time they have ever both missed the Cut. Times change.
Joffrey Baratheon, aka Bubba Watson – Bubba was of course irrelevant in the British Open because he sucks at playing golf across the pond but he is a whiny brat that everyone hates so I couldn’t resist.
Daenerys Targaryen, aka Lee Westwood – The guy has spent the better part of his life going around from country to country building an army of fans with small victories here and there but always had one prize in mind. Just when he gets inches away from touching the Claret Jug and finally vindicating his fans for all those years of following him…BOOM…the dream dies. But hey, at least his caddy/girlfriend seems like a keeper.
Ramsay Bolton, aka Paul Azinger – The less of him the better. He tortures people every time he opens his mouth. He so badly wants to be Johnny Miller but he just isn’t, and never will be. Speaking of, I miss Johnny, can he at least come back for the majors? Also, how did NBC not have the pro tracer on the first tee box with OB on the left and right side of the fairway? That was an epic fail on their part.
The High Sparrow, The R&A – You talk about an abuse of power. It would have probably ended up with the same final result but I will never forgive the R&A for moving up the tee times two hours on Sunday. On that note…
Cersei Lannister, aka Mike Davis – Despite everyone hating him he somehow weaseled his way into power although has no clue what he is doing. Plus I envision Mike Davis sitting in his USGA castle just thinking of ways to screw people over all day every day. SHAME! SHAME! SHAME!
Samwell Tarly, aka Patrick Reed – Sure he is relevant from time to time but overall he basically just annoys everyone everywhere he goes.
Robb Stark, aka David Duval - The guy was the king of golf at one point, albeit briefly. He’s very likable but way in over his head. The guy was +28 for his first 27 holes but to his credit he battled to the end playing his last nine holes in a very respectable one under. I love you Double D but it might be time to shut it down for good my man.
Sandor "The Hound" Clegane, aka Jon Rahm – While incredibly talented the guy just seems angry all the time, yelling at anything and anyone. He is literally his own worst enemy.
Oberyn Martell, aka Rickie Fowler – He is a great guy at the end of the day that surrounds himself with beautiful women and lots of money but he can’t seem to get it done when it matters the most. Oh, and that mustache is terrible, but the mullet is atrocious. Seriously though, if Rickie is ever going to win a Major it’s going to be coming from behind when he can post a low number on a windy day and watch the leaders crumble coming in. That couldn’t have been set up better for him on Sunday and what does he do…immediate snap hook OB on the first tee to end his chances before they even begin. That might be the most Rickie Fowler moment yet.
Jaime Lannister, aka Jordan Spieth – For a guy that was statistically the best ball striker on Tour less than two years ago he looks like he is swinging a golf club with one hand these days. It’s pretty painful to watch actually. The fact that he was able to make the cut, let alone actually contend for a while over the weekend was simply amazing and a testament to just how good his short game is right now. Golf is more fun when Jordan is playing well, I just don’t know at this point if or when that will happen again. Here’s hoping to sooner than later.
Jon Snow, aka Tommy Fleetwod – He wasn’t the fans first choice but he certainly would have made for a nice alternative. He was flawless with his irons and probably hit it as good or better than Lowry but the short game wasn’t even close to Lowry’s and that was the difference. Anytime they play a Major where ball striking is at a premium you can count on Fleetwood being in the mix. And of course the hair…
Dragon Glass, aka J.B. Holmes – More on that in a minute, but seriously, the guy is the slowest player I have ever seen in my life. He might be the nicest guy in the world but I will forever root against JB Holmes. It’s unwatchable. Nice final 87 round JB.
Knight King, aka Brooks Koepka – It seemed like no matter what you did you simply couldn’t kill the guy. He showed no emotion, didn’t get rattled and put fear into everyone around him. He is either confident or cocky and it really just depends on how you view the difference. He said after his round Saturday, “Nobody has hit it better than me this week…I putted the worst in the entire field.” While that certainly sounded cocky and the statistics didn’t back it up, sometimes statistics lie. Based on the eyeball test alone no one hit it better than Brooks did the first three days, not even Lowry. But there is clearly one thing that can take Koepka down…slow play. From the opening tee shot JB Holmes took forever and in doing so killed any chance Brooks had of mounting a comeback on Sunday. Say what you want but Koepka hasn’t hit it like he did on Sunday since he was 11-years-old. That’s not a coincidence. Walking off the 12th green Koepka stared at an official and pointed to his imaginary watch shaking his head. I’m not sure Brooks would have won Sunday no matter who he was paired with, but yeah, it clearly rattled him.
Arya Stark, aka Shane Lowry – Lowry won the 2009 Irish Open as an Amateur and the basically disappeared for 10 years with the occasional exception here and there. Despite being a local, going into the tournament he was overlooked by most, myself included. After Rory’s opening round and Graeme McDowell making triple on 18 Thursday the entire Country of Ireland turned to Lowry to be the hero, save the country and take down the man that seemed unstoppable from the other side of the world. He will forever be a legend in Ireland.
Despite being boring, I have to admit the storyline and the way it all played out for Lowry and the fans was pretty cool to watch. His 63 on Saturday was absolutely incredible when you factor in the surroundings. I can’t even fathom the pressure he felt on the first tee Sunday, he literally had the weight of an entire country on his shoulders. Now he’s a big man, but that’s a tall task. I can only imagine the amount of beer that is going to be consumed out of the Claret jug over the next several weeks. We may not see Shane Lowry again until the 2020 British Open.
I’m sure the country of Ireland will be drinking to their hero Shane Lowry into the wee hours of the morning raising a glass to the awkward looking kid that showed promise 10 years ago, left and came back a hero, "What is dead may never die…But rises again harder and stronger."