Finally, here it has been a long long wait: two years since royal port rush and shane larry, look where we are we’re at the open clubhouse. Now this is where the players hang out. This is where they get settled into what this week is called the inner bubble with our restrictions here this week, uh the inner bubble is the sanctum uh, so the players have to be very safe with cover. But how good is it, ladies and gentlemen, to just be back to see everything again: the beautiful blue of the open championship with a dash of gold? It is just heavenly the yellow trimmings and, as you can see here, it’s pretty empty it’s, pretty ghost town, because everyone has done their business, they’ve gone they’re getting home and they are getting ready for round one tomorrow. We’Ve had a whole week of practice days and tomorrow is the moment it’s when the open championship gets underway. How good is this? So if you look online as well, we’ve done a we’ve done a video on youtube from behind the scenes. So you can get a really good look at the players lounge at some stage, but i guess it’s just the fact that we’re back here again we’re going to take you through the walk that the players will do tomorrow morning. One of those walks and golf that you have to save it’s, absolutely stunning we’ve got nicholas poppleton here, made it through on final qualifying.
He played with dj in a practice round. Not many people can say that after final qualifying very exciting, but look at this. The outdoor area we’ve got food drinks, you name it they’ve all got it. So, throughout the day, i’ve been chipping away. Taking a few notes. It’S been a long four days of build up and an exciting four days as well, but this is where the walk to the first tee starts so george’s. I like that name, it’s just nice, to see it back. It is so nice to see it back. No doubt about it now i guess the cool thing about having the all access pass. Is we get the chance to see what’s happening behind the scenes? Follow a few players from inside the rope. It’S been a lot of fun, and today it was an absolute circus and all the fans in the uk were here for one group and one group only. It was the big bombers, all the big fellas bryson deshambo dustin, johnson, phil, mickelson and john rum that’s. Not a bad four ball, if you ask me and if you think about it since covert the uk fans have not seen the new bryson it’s very new for them, so they were absolutely fizzing to come out and see the big fella in action and i’ll. Tell you what hey gents greenies are greeny signing off for the day those greens running smooth for us. These boys are putting in a serious shift, no doubt about it.
They have been working tirelessly and some would say, they’ve been working for longer than most because because of the delay we’ve been preparing for this at rural st george’s for three years. How are we good, very good ready for tomorrow? No doubt about it. It’S been a long build up for you guys hasn’t it two years in the waiting room. Oh, you must be excited what time, what time are you guys up? In the morning, half three for a four o’clock start. Yeah, i won’t. I i won’t see you there Laughter, i will not be well. I actually used to be a a green keeper or probably a turf manager at eden park, so all the cricket and stuff, but it was uh. You know those are the old days. You know my money, yeah good question who’s my money on i’ve been watching a lot of dj this week and i can’t go past him he’s just bombing it and the fairways are a bit softer than usual aren’t. They so they’re going to harden up for us or more win tomorrow, but no more rain right here. No more rain, that’s exciting for you, boys, eh all right, exciting for everyone at home as well. So we need no more rain and firmer fairways. Thanks for your effort, boys very excited to see the golf course in action and there’s the pro shop back there as well a little clubhouse and i’m scotland in there early in the week, but we won’t talk too much about that.
Look at this first sight. First side of the grandstand we’ll take you there later in the week. I don’t want to give away all our secrets. You know i’ve got to save some we’ve got five days of this. You know it’s all great stuff so, but i wan na i digressed big time didn’t i uh let’s go back to let’s, go back to the bryson big bombers group. It was. It was an absolute thrill. The uk fans hadn’t seen him in so long and he was absolutely bombing it earlier on the range as well. He got the fans going. He was trying to clear the net at the back, so it’s about 3 50, and luckily yesterday he had a bit of wind behind him, absolutely launched it over the back over the netting onto the path and it’s nearly clocked, someone in the golf buggy um. So bryson he’s revved up, but the question is: is it going to be costly with the length of the rough out here at royal saint george’s it’s seriously thick, but here we go. This is when the nerves start really kicking in for the players up the staircase, where the view only gets better really enjoyed. Look at that sunset, absolutely stunning, a great time for this walk. Actually, as you can see, the big yellow scoreboard always a feature here at the open championship. No doubt about it. Look at this tomorrow. Fans will be everywhere to be seen.
Do you know why? Because 32 000 a day are allowed and for people in the uk it’s been a long time coming. There’S been a few fans recently, but this will be the biggest crowd in some time. It’S, absolutely amazing. The marshall’s clocking off for the date oyo gents good day at the office, oh who’s, who from who’s your ball sign from oh cooch, well done very nice of matt kutcher. To do that, the players have been great. They have had to be quite careful with the covert protocols and we mentioned the inner bubble, so they’re managing that very well taking photos with all the kids um as per usual. Exemplary uh behaviour from the whole entire field. But look at this, the sun is shining. The calm before the storm there’s the open shop, a lot of player, a lot of fans will be digging into that and right below us. The putting green a lot of players have obviously left a few balls behind. I might have to go. I might have to go fill up my golf bag with those it’s, an absolute gift, no doubt about it and as we look over here so this is this – is the open social media team they’ve been pumping out a few stories? Well done jeans. So if you want to make sure you go online, get on instagram facebook youtube, you name, it tag the open and we’ll get it live. It’S going to be great.
The this you can sort of sense it online as well as here. The atmosphere at the open is picking up and it’s, so exciting, um, fun fact: i’ve got written down here. Actually one of my favorites it’s, just a sort of flashback 2011, was the last time the open was here in ralston george’s, obviously to to make you realize how long ago that was the world number one luke donald, the world number two lee westwood so times have Changed there’s been a lot happen since those days it sort of makes me think about what i’ve heard predominantly over the last month or so football’s coming home it’s coming home, okay, we’ll! Stop there. We won’t fire up too much about that. But the question is: is the claret jug coming home? You know there’s some massive names there that we need to think about you’re lee westwood, your tommy fleetwoods you’re justin roses ian poulter, tyrrell, hatton, matt, fitzpatrick, paul casey. They need to win a major. They need to win the open, surely and speaking of the open. This is the one the first tee. If you look to your right, there, ben ben our lovely cameraman he’s, carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders right now, there’s hand sanitizer, there’s fruit. Obviously, a few chalky bars got ta need gon na need your sugar, no doubt about it, get a little bit of that on me. There’S one percentage, those one percenters mars bars snickers boosts more of a kitkat guy myself, but here we go.
Ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to the first tee at royal scent george’s. Imagine imagine the nerves, the excitement, the atmosphere here now. Do you know what goes here this little this little spot here, the cj the claret jug tomorrow morning, it’ll be safely secured in here, as the fans get to come in wow, it has been a while since we’ve been here, and it feels great you can just A few goosebumps as we come to the starters block yeah the open is here hard not to soak it in, but look let’s talk tee times, while we’re here let’s get a little t shirt out all the information, all the fun facts. Now the really cool part about this tee sheet is the first tee shot. Tomorrow is going to be hit by richard bland and wow. Is he happy at 6 35 a.m? The englishman will tee off in front of his home fans such a special occasion for him. He posted on social media earlier today, saying truly an honor that i’ve been given the opening tee shot at the open, something i will remember for the rest of my life and why wouldn’t you it is truly special. We had darren clark. Do it last year at royal port rush? It is one of those moments where you are a part of history and your own slice of history that you can take home to your family as we look for a few little tea times.
While i’m. Here, 719, our amateur champion lead, shep it’ll, be off great grouping with him. He’S got danny willett the masters champion with him, exciting stuff for him and the family, and then not long after him. Another amateur champion, that’s right we’ve got two amateur champions in the field. Obviously, because of the scenario with coven we’ve had it we’ve had a double up, which is just fantastic it’s. The first time that’s ever happened so that’s great, so joe long and lead shepard are in the field and joe long he’s, with darren clark and bernard wiesberger. At 8 25. good luck, joe, but then we go into some other big names. Now a group that i’m excited about defending champion shane lowry, he’s paired with 2010 open champion louis usthazen and then look john rahm. Is he the next open champion? He’S won the last major he’s world number, one fairly good chance, hasn’t he but shane larry. How cool was it to see him? He was a great open champion over the last couple of years, so special for him to have it for those two years and he returned the claret jug a little bit emotional and we got the chance to chat to him after he returned it and he’s just Loved every minute of this journey – and you can just tell what a great bloke he is and and yeah. As i said, he is a class open champion and it was quite sad almost quite sad to to leave it behind, because he’s got very used to having it on the on the kitchen table.
He was mentioning. He had it on the mantel, so every day he’d be able to look at the claret jug uh, and you can just tell the glint in his eye as he was talking about the future and and whether or not he can do it again soon after them. Dustin johnson justin rose and we’ll sell a tourist which will be exciting and, as you can see here, this is the view they will have on the first tee pretty hard to see the fairway but it’s there a lot of tee shots here this week very difficult To see the fairways a few blind shots throughout the process, but then later on in the afternoon, if you are going to come down to the open, you better make sure you’re here what we, what we like to call the hot half hour, a very exciting three Groups in a row at 259, xander schofley, ricky, fowler and scotsman, bob mcintyre that’s a juicy group following them: justin thomas adam, scott and england’s best hope, in my opinion, tommy fleetwood. What a guy he is. We had an interview with him earlier in the week. We had a lot of fun with him on the sixth hole where famously tom watson got a hole in one back in 2011 and wow tom watson, then tom fleetwood got pretty close. He put it to about three feet on camera for us, so he was showing off, but he’s always a great customer, and we all know that this is his favorite championship of all so it’s his childhood dream.
This is the one he wants. This is the open. No, no not now not now that’s the wind of the links that’s, the wind of the links, no doubt about it and finally, in our hot half hour, rory mackery, patrick reed cameron, smith, at 3, 21. plenty of exciting tea times on there, another tea time. I’M. Looking forward to is brandon grace now, the funny thing about brandon grace is for the last two open championships. He has played the opening couple of rounds with the eventual winner, jordan, spieth shane lowry, so tomorrow he’s playing with bryson deshambo and jordan spieth. Some of those would think they’re pretty good chances, but after after mentioning that stat to uh to brandon today he was pretty disappointed. He said what about third time lucky, what about me – and i thought that was a really fair point. He would be a great champion and a deserving one uh from memory shot 62 here once and wow that’s, pretty good right, how’s it royal berkdale as well brandon gross seriously impressive i’ve, been there it’s beautiful course right, the windy links. So, in summary, the course conditions are great. The rough is thick. We were here about a month ago, filming rules from royal saint george’s, which you can also see on all the uh from all our rna social channels. The rough was pretty short, but all of a sudden, poof it’s popped up. It is thick it’s knee height, so the pliers are going to be have to be strategic off the tees.
The fairways have been soft. There’S been a lot of rain earlier in the week, but, as we’ve said, with the green with the greenies, there is not too much rain to come, which is very exciting. Indeed, we mentioned john rahman earlier in the world number one, a really cool story which we heard in the press conference today. It just showed that you can figure out these things and press conferences and it’s so exciting. So i just want to run through this from the press conference. It was about john rum’s swing. The pre tournament favorite explain the reason behind his short. It stems from being born with a club foot that required significant corrective surgery. He’S never been asked this question before so he was only too happy to answer it, but what he didn’t know is that ron was delighted to finally explain. As i just said, he told one of the media team um and it was great that people just assumed his short swing was because he was tight and it was a bit of a technique thing. But no, we all know now that it was. He was born with club foot and required that surgery, so little fun fact for you, ram was very jocular. Today he was in great spirits. We also caught up with him on the on the course as well, so he was good fun but there’s. So much been happening and at the end of the day, it’s just exciting to have these things happening, it’s exciting, to be here to experience these things and as the sun sets on the first tee, we are moments away from the 149th open championship getting started right Here at ralston, george’s we’ll be back tomorrow, we’ll be back for the rest of the week, giving you the behind scenes coverage you deserve from back home on your couch, so sit back, relax and enjoy the open championship.