Mickelson a deserved winner of ‘fascinating’ Open

Whitby Golf Club professional and Whitby Gazette golf columnist, Tony Mason'w110412
Whitby Golf Club professional and Whitby Gazette golf columnist, Tony Mason'w110412

What a fascinating Open Championship played at Muirfield – the first for a few years played in genuine links conditions, the course firm and fast, bunkers swallowing any ball just a little wide and glassy greens.

This kind of golf is more a challenge of how players cope with bad bounces and difficult breaks than in actually hitting the shots, and the ones most in control of themselves were the ones who came out on top.

Phil Mickelson proved a worthy champion, finishing with one of the great closing rounds to be played in a major. And what a great result for young Yorkshireman Matthew Fitzpatrick – one to watch in a few years’ time.

At Whitby, the Rabbits section invited the Tigers to play a fourball betterball last Wednesday, and Tony Orton and his partner Harvey Richardson finished as winners with 45 points. Chris Lawson and Mike Coates took second from Mike Storr and Richard Brown over the back nine holes after they had tied on 43.

Martin Shackleton won the WG Robinson Trophy with 65 nett, beating Tom Gale over the back nine. Martin’s gross 71 was also the best gross score on the day.

Tam McConville had 66, and Chris Wood, Kevin Barker and Malcolm Eglon had 67.

Mike Kilpatrick and Simon Walker had 68.

The Preston Cup on Sunday was won by Steve Foster on 66, beating Mike Kilpatrick over the back nine.

Bill Estill and Simon Gibson had 67, one better than Richard Brown and Richard Barker. Brian Jamieson and Chris Eglon had 69. Neil Coates had the best gross score of 72.

It is Men’s Invitation Day tomorrow with the tee booked between 9am and 2pm. Sunday is the Rabbits’ Captains Day and there is a Midweek Stableford on Wednesday.

In the ladies’ section, Sue Bennison won the Margaret Stalker Senior Trophy last Tuesday with nett 70. Barbara Mahan had 75 and Janet Wightman 76.

Karen Fellows won the Par competition on Thursday 18th with 3 up against the card, ahead of Marjorie Mackenzie and Mandy Coates on 2 up.

Alan Atkinson was this week’s winner of £100 in the 200 Club draw.

Tony’s Tip: Z is the end of the alphabet and when you have put together all that is necessary for a really good round, remember what you must do at the end of your game to make sure your score is recorded properly.

All 18 gross scores must be clearly written on your card in the right place (you don’t need to worry too much about addition, nett scores or points – mistakes there will be rectified by the committee), the card must be signed by the marker and the player and handed in as soon as possible after your game is over.

Don’t let discussion over your round distract you from completing these vital pieces.