Pro bookends Open round in inglorious fashion

Fore right! The route of Stewart Cink’s tee shot on 18 in the very first spherical of the Open Championship.


Some times, ya bought it. Other days, ya really don’t.

On Thursday, Stewart Cink did not have it.

“It seriously hurts to have a working day like nowadays, due to the fact I appreciate participating in here,” Cink stated adhering to his 6-about 78 in the opening spherical of the 150th Open Championship on the storied Previous Course.

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That can materialize to even the best gamers in the planet right here on this bumpy, wind-battered hyperlinks, and not only for the reason that their swings aren’t cooperating. To article a amount on the Old System, you also need to have your wits about you. Avoiding pot bunkers and leaving solution shots in the proper spots on and all around the greens requires golfers to assume their way about the study course like a captain tacking a vessel by way of stormy waters. One particular very poor option can Cink…er, sink you.

Take the par-3 8th, which on the card in the initial round performed about 190 yards. With the wind and the crispiness of the floor, Cink estimated he required to play only a 170-yard shot to the back again-remaining pin. Nope, far too much. His ball trundled off the back again, leading to a bogey. Later on, Cink believed that to be pin large he necessary only to carry his ball about 155 yards.

“I felt like it was just one undesirable decision soon after a further out there,” mentioned Cink, who this 7 days is enjoying in his 23rd Open up Championship. “I saved being incorrect. I’m not definitely accustomed to that.”

He added, “You get off the rails, and you just experience like you continue to be off the rails.”

The derailing started early, at the par-4 1st. Following splitting the sprawling fairway, Cink experienced only 83 yards remaining to the gap. But when he strike his strategy only 72 yards, it disappeared into the burn off that fronts the inexperienced. A drop, chip and putt afterwards, Cink experienced an opening bogey.

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Over the ensuing 16 holes, he made 5 more bogeys from a lone birdie, which delivers us to his tee shot at the legendary 18th gap, which shares a fairway with the 1st. There is only one position you just can’t manage to miss out on with your tee shot on 18, and that is suitable, where a fast paced pedestrian thoroughfare identified as The Back links traces the entirety of the gap.

Cink skipped correct. Like, way appropriate. A lucky enthusiast on The Links experienced an sudden memento.  

Cink is a jovial soul and superior activity, so even with the tough begin and finish to his spherical, he still found a beneficial in his struggles.

“I may well have established a report nowadays,” he claimed. “I could be the initially person ever to strike it in the burn off on 1 and strike it O.B. on 18 in the very same spherical. I really don’t know, but it was just not a day for me in any way. I could not decide lies right. I examine putts wrong, and I also executed some shots pretty badly. All round, it provides up to about 78.”

Here’s some far better news: On Friday, Cink parred the 1st and birdied 18. With 3 other birdies versus as many bogeys, it included up to a much-improved score, a 1-less than 71.

alan bastable

Alan Bastable Editor

As’s government editor, Bastable is responsible for the editorial course and voice of a single of the game’s most highly regarded and really trafficked information and service web pages. He wears numerous hats — editing, creating, ideating, establishing, daydreaming of 1 working day breaking 80 — and feels privileged to operate with these types of an insanely gifted and hardworking group of writers, editors and producers. Right before grabbing the reins at, he was the capabilities editor at Golfing Magazine. A graduate of the College of Richmond and the Columbia University of Journalism, he life in New Jersey with his wife and foursome of children.