The Open Championship 2021 is all set to commence from July 15 and the Royal St. George Sandwich, Kent in England, will host the 149th edition of the tournament. The Open is the final major championship of the year and South African legend Gary Player has given out his opinion about the course.
Gary Player played 46 consecutive Open Championships from 1956 to 2001. So the legendary South African knows one or two things about the event and the venues.
Gary Player gives out his opinion about The Open Championship 2021 venue
Three-time British Open or The Open Championship winner Gary Player has said that the Royal St. George course is a straightforward Open Championship course. The only thing which makes this course difficult is the wind, which is uncontrollable.
“Royal St George’s probably is the easiest of The Open golf courses, but the thing that will make it, obviously, is the wind. It’s a golf course that is steeped in tradition there have been some wonderful winners,” said Player.
The Royal St. George will host The Open Championship for the 15th time. Its first was in 1894. Meanwhile, Gary Player remembers a bizarre incident that took place in 1949.
“One of the most remarkable things that ever happened in golf, Harry Bradshaw from Ireland, hit his ball in a bottle and had to play it. Whereas today he would have got relief.”
In the second round, Bradshaw’s ball came to rest in the bottom of the broken beer bottle. Though he would have likely received a relief, Bradshaw chose to play as it lay and eventually made a double bogey. And then went onto lose in the playoff.
After this incident, the course wasn’t used for The Open Championship until 1981. Though the course has hosted five major championships since then, Gary Player believes the town itself isn’t ideal for hosting a major.
“It’s very difficult to have the Open there because they only have one road into the course, and it really causes a massive amount of congestion with traffic,” he mentioned. “The Open has changed so much from the old days when you didn’t have big crowds and people pouring in from all over the world. This year, it won’t be as congested, which is going to make quite a difference.”