News

Truth & Rumors: Tiger Woods gets hero’s welcome at St. Andrews

Tiger Woods has repeatedly called St. Andrews his favorite major venue, and, based on the greeting he got from fans Sunday, St. Andrews loves him back. Hugh MacDonald of The Scotland Herald followed Woods during his practice round Sunday and reported on the warm response Woods got from the fans. Heck, even the R&A’s grand poobah sounds like he’s rooting for Tiger.

As Woods, followed by a growing crowd of supporters, walked towards the seventh tee, he was greeted by Peter Dawson, chief executive of the Royal and Ancient, golf’s governing body.
Dawson said he was delighted that Woods had travelled to St Andrews, where he won the Open in 2000 and 2005. “The championship needs the world No 1 player and vice versa,” he said. He predicted that Woods would challenge for the title, saying: “He has proven he can play here. Let’s hope this is the week he can get his game right. He is conscious no-one has won it here three times in a row.”
BBC, ESPN to broadcast Open in HD Better late than never. One of the frustrations for American golf fans is that the British Open was never broadcast in high-definition. Of all the majors, the British Open is the one American fans are least likely to get to see in person, so the HD feed is as close as most of us will ever get to those magical Open rota courses. Fortunately, this year you will see the Old Course in all in ancient glory, according to TVPredictions.com.
In past years, U.S. networks did not offer the tournament in HD because they said the BBC did not produce the event in the format. The U.S. networks said it would have cost an enormous amount of money to independently set up a high-def production overseas.
However, the BBC has announced that it will produce this year's tournament in high-def. The tournament begins Thursday and ends Sunday. ESPN will be able to pick up the high-def feed from the BBC and deliver it to its viewers in the U.S. The dark knight returns? We're all looking for that age-defying Open Championship dark horse like Greg Norman at Birkdale in 2008 or Tom Watson at Turnberry last year. How about Sir Nick Faldo? Mark Reason of The Telegraph (UK) makes the case for formerly brooding, now charming three-time Open champion making one last run at a championship.
The bookies have such a scene down as fanciful nonsense, quoting Faldo as 500-1. They don't care that Faldo has finished seventh, sixth, first, 39th, 41st and 11th in his six St Andrews Opens. They just see a commentator who won't be lifting the claret jug to celebrate his 53rd birthday on Sunday. But you can't blame Faldo for thinking the impossible. He won't say so in public, but you know the feeling breathes in a corner of his heart. Two years ago at Birkdale Faldo stood on the sidelines in his corduroy jacket and dark glasses and applauded along with the rest of us as Greg Norman walked on to the 18th green.
I was thinking the same thing when I talked with Faldo for the March issue of Golf Magazine. Here’s what he said:
When you tee it up at St. Andrews this year, is there still a glimmer of hope that maybe, if things go right, you could have a chance? No. I mean, let's get real. If I can make the cut and survive, that's pretty good. 
Still, Faldo's one to watch on Thursday.Stray ShotsSome stories we saw while wondering whose weight fluctuates more: Phil's or Oprah's?Colin Montgomerie’s not just a player in this Open Championship, he’s also a TV analyst. (Via USA Today)
Everything you wanted to know about private clubs but were afraid to ask. (Via The New York Times)
Michael Vick was a no-show at his own celebrity golf tournament. (Via The Detroit Free-Press)

More From the Web
by Kevin Cunningham