Greetings from Scotland, where I’m preparing to defend my Senior British Open title this week at Royal Birkdale.
For the first time since 2006, I played The Open Championship last week, and I really enjoyed my time at Muirfield. I played with two legends in the first two rounds, Nick Faldo and Tom Watson. Nick played well considering he had not played a competitive round on the PGA TOUR in several years. Tom is as popular as ever in Scotland and he continues to amaze me with his ball-striking ability and his flair for links golf. Contrast that with my Sunday pairing, 18-year-old Matthew Fitzpatrick, who will attend Northwestern University in the fall. Matthew won low amateur by five shots and was a great kid to play with – we traded some fist bumps throughout the day and it was great to see him soak in the atmosphere of a major.
As for my game, my scores steadily improved each day. The course was incredibly challenging, given how firm and fast the conditions were.
As you know, Phil Mickelson, who has played in all nine Presidents Cups to date, won The Open with one of the best rounds of golf you’ll ever see. Several players I expect to be on the U.S. Presidents Cup Team this fall also impressed me with their play at Muirfield, namely Hunter Mahan and Brandt Snedeker. Both players have yet to win a major, but they continue to contend in these big events.
We’re just over two months away from The Presidents Cup and the automatic qualification process is winding down. Looking at the current top 10 in the U.S. Team standings, even our young players have significant Ryder Cup and/or Presidents Cup experience, which is always a plus.
Thanks for your support of The Presidents Cup, and see you at Muirfield!