The Open: Tiger Woods off to a flyer at Carnoustie

Australia's Cameron Davis on the 4th during day two of The Open Championship. Pic David Davies  PA Wire

Australia's Cameron Davis on the 4th during day two of The Open Championship. Pic David Davies PA Wire

He grew up close to another major championship which awards its victor a Green Jacket instead of the Claret Jug up for grabs this week but as much as he loves the Masters he would take an Open victory without any complaints.

Woods has not finished in the top-10 at a major tournament since 2013. The 31 players who managed to break par were separated by just four shots. Granted, it did change a little bit out of the west at the end, but it's just hard to control that ball on the green, especially when it's rolling about 100 yards.

"Links golf has treated me well, I enjoy the challenge of it, and hopefully it treats me well again this week", Fox said.

"I could have hit a 5-iron easily and just said, 'You know what?" There are only three par 3s which gives the bombers an advantage this week. Another is defending champion Jordan Spieth, who was in range of the lead until he made one mental error and two bad swings while dropping four shots over the last four holes for a 72 that didn't do too much damage. "He's a marvellous putter and he hits the ball pretty straight".

Last five champions: 2017 Jordan Spieth (Royal Birkdale), 2016 Henrik Stenson (Royal Troon), 2015 Zach Johnson (St Andrews), 2014 Rory McIlroy (Royal Liverpool), 2013 Phil Mickelson (Muirfield).

On the longest day - from Sandy Lyle hitting the opening tee shot at 6:35 a.m. and the group including newcomer Bronson Burgoon finishing off the first round almost 13 hours later - everyone had their own style of getting around the course reputed to be the toughest links in golf.

"I've never played a course this firm", Finau said. I flew home with him after he won and I'm staying with him this week and he no longer has it. A couple of my 6-irons went about 240.

"You get to places like Augusta National, where it's just a big ballpark, and the golf course outgrows you, unfortunately", Woods continued.

With a whole day until the first round's action was set to begin, Woods appeared irritable and unwilling to please the young golf fans, simply ignoring them and even pushing them away to get past to the next hole. He qualified for the Open Championship through results in Asia previous year. The firm, crusty conditions are not entirely new. "We always try to follow in their footsteps", Van Rooyen said, but now as they play the same course, the collective willpower of the 20-somethings is leaving the older guard in their wake.

"The way I've been playing coming in, it hasn't really even been on my mind, but I knew if I played well here it would be a great opportunity to move up the list", added Kisner, who is now 19th in the qualifying standings.

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