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1998 champion O'Meara tees off the 146th Open

1998 champion O'Meara tees off the 146th Open

O'Meara won the Open at Royal Birkdale in 1998.

Twelve Englishmen now occupy a place in the top 100 of the world rankings, led by former U.S. Open champion Justin Rose at number 12, the in-form Tommy Fleetwood at 14 and the Arizona-based Paul Casey at 16.

Wide Open When is The Open 2017, what TV channel is it on and how do I get tickets?

The Swede, who put on a golfing masterclass at Royal Troon a year ago to defeat Phil Mickelson in one of the greatest Open duels of all-time, says he is unhappy with the state of his game and has been for a while now.

The last Englishman to win golf's oldest major on home soil before Jacklin was Reg Whitcombe at Royal St George's in 1938.

Local favourite Tommy Fleetwood, who was fourth in the US Open behind Brooks Koepka, will renew battle with the American at 10:09am along with Japan's Hideki Matsuyama, who was joint second at Erin Hills. However, since his 2008 triumph at Birkdale, the Irishman has not finished higher than 20th in the tournament.

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"Those two are the sort of steady players who could thrive on a par-70 course like Birkdale where you need to plot your way around and display plenty of patience".

Sweden's Henrik Stenson won the tournament a year ago in historic fashion, scoring the lowest final round by a victor of The Open, and setting a new 72-hole Championship record of twenty-under-par.

- Harry Vardon holds the record for most wins at The Open (6), ahead of James Braid, John Henry Taylor, Peter Thomson and Tom Watson (all 5). He has a total of six top-10 finishes this year.

This is such a great week playing in your own Open and I'm very relaxed having finished off in Scotland and just coming down now and spending a bit of time on my chipping and putting though, as I say, I don't want to do too much today - I want to slowly build myself up for the rest of the week.

McIlroy has had a less-than-ideal build-up to the Merseyside major, missing the cut in his last two events. He had racked up seven top-10s in his previous nine majors. He has been outside the top 10 in his other five appearances.


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