Anne Van Dam’s sister meets her from tournament in her plane

Brilliant Dutch golfer Anne Van Dam had a treat when her sister Helen met her following her the Aramco Team Series London. She flew her home to Holland in the 737 she normally pilots for KLM Airlines.

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Jon Rahm and Bryson Dechambeau both out of Olympic Games after testing positive for covid

News this afternoon from the Spanish Golf Federation that Jon Rahm has withdrawn from the Olympic Games Golf event starting on Thursday at Kasumigaseri Country Club after testing positive for Covid. Then news that Bryson Dechambeu has also withdrawn for the same reason. He will be replaced by Patrick Reed.

This is another roller coaster for US Open champion Rahm whoo had tested positive after leading the Memorial tournament in May. He was tested three times after competing in The Open and the third test proved positive. He has also been double vaccinated.

Social media reactions reached into their hundreds quickly. Most of which was negative. For example:

“Something isn’t right with all this” “Test him again!” “These tests aren’t legit”. “It’s fishy, the tests are BS” and so on.

Rahm will be replaced with Jorge Campillo. He issued the following statement.

Wish them both a speedy recovery, should they have symptoms.

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Some things to know about new Open Champion Collin Morikawa

Apart from the remarkable fact that he has won two major championships on his debut, here are a few randoms. Collin is a Taylor Made player but he has a Titelist wedge which pays homage to his love of breakfast cereal.

His girlfriend Katherine Zhu was a collegiate golfer at Pepperdine University who understands the game.

“We met in college and just clicked. It’s crazy because I won my first college tournament that next week and we’ve done pretty good since – it’s really fun.

Zhu admitted their relationship is “very competitive” when they hit the course together with Morikawa adding: “Always, we never let each other win.

“I think she beats me on probably 70 per cent of our chipping competitions. It actually makes me a better player. What’s great about her is that we’re always competing.

“To have her around [on the PGA Tour] on off weeks when no one’s around, she can always bring a wedge to the course and we can always do something fun.”

His iron play this week has been stellar, but he says he loves the creativity of hitting shots high, throw a narrow window and making up shots around the greens. A natural linksman, even if oops, in his winner’s speech he forgot it’s balled The Open, and called it the British Open. He’ll learn!

He played TV host Jimmy Kimmell at Super Mario Golf recently

Collin goes to Tokyo as a member of the United States Olympic team.

Here he is leaving the UK on his way back to America with some extra luggage.

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Planes over Royal St Georges

Nice tribute from pilots at nearby RAF Manston as two World War II spitfires flew over the course.

Another plane has been circling over the course all week. It’s the aerial cameraman from Sky Spiorts. While some of the overhead shots are good, the plane is so noisy. It has, in particular, been driving the marshalls on the 5th hole mad. Although I think drones are super dangerous near airports, in controlled circucmstances they are effective and would have been better here than the incessant all day noise of the plane.

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The Fake Pundit

A week ago, at the Scottish Open, Collin Morikawa was pranked by the European Tour media team, and now he’s leading The Open

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Bryson intends to live and learn

After a tumultuous week at The Open, Bryson DeChambeau said this

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Women and Girls in Golf Week returns August 16-22

For the fourth year Women and Girls in Golf Week will return from August 16-22. This will take place at the same time as the AIG Womens Open at Carnoustie. This successful week online aims to promote female participation in golf at all levels. Look out for the #whyigolf hashtag on social media and Women will be encouraged to share their stories via videos and Instagram stories.

This year there will be a different focus each day on: careers in golf indistry, volunteering, health and wellbeing, competing, role models, newbies and join the club. The event has huge support from multiple organisations and manufacturers within golf.

Lauren Soray, Women and girls manager at England Golf says:

“Telling stories of women and girls in golf brings their experiences to life and helps destroy negative stereotypes that belong in another era. The sport is far more modern and progressive in its outlook. It’s been great to have so many positive contributions from men in the game who see that golf is a game for everyone regardless of age, gender, ethnicity or ability”.

Fine words, but the words “background” or “circumstances” would have made the sentiment even more complete. Because until golf is available, without question or comeback to someone of any background or circumstance, it will always be perceived by people outside the game as elitist and not for them. These worcs are very important.

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What’s been different about the galleries at this year’s Open?

While we’re used to galleries of 100,000 a day, 32,000 fans a day have been glad to get in at all, even though its been stop start with the covid and security checks. But there’s definitely been a difference this year.

Very few international broadcast staff and press are here. I saw some from Ashai TV from Japan and Golf Channel in America have about 20 staff. We’re used to fans coming from all over the world, and American supporters in particular. Apart from the players and their 4 person support teams I’ve barely heard an American voice.

Which sort of exposes just how posh Royal St Georges is. The members and their “lady wives” have been visible but generally there have been more posh people here in one place than you would see see in an episode of Made In Chelsea. The voice, which commands authority, has been heard a lot this week. But it is a posh venue, The club was in established in 1887 as an extension of a London’s gentlemans club and it’s only been six years since women members have been allowed. There is a long waiting list for membership, although if you buy a house on the Lord North’s estate, you are awarded restricted playing rights at the club.

Indeed I remember coming down to RSG to watch the final of the Amateur Championship, the year Trevor Immelman was in the final. And I remember sneaking into the clubhouse to use the facilities, because I needed to, and shifting out quickly before a man told me off. I just accepted that that was the way it was.

I notice that the R&A are planning to review all the applications for the 150th Open at St Andrews so that people from every demographic and geographic are represented. Good idea. But this year’s Open has been uniquely English. Within the roars of the excited, passionate, smaller galleries there has been the occasional “Yaaaaaah, go Raaaaaahm”

Though not all the English people present are posh, or abide by dress rules…

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American broadcaster slightly wrong on The Open venues geography

American broadcaster NBC put up this map with Royal Lytham and St Annes placed in Leeds. Two great courses there – former Ryder Cup venue Moortown, and Alister Mackenzie designed Allwoodley, but no where near the sea.

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Matthias Schmid is low amateur

23 year old Matthias Schmid is the low amateur of this year’s Open Championship. On Friday he had a magnificent round of 65 to tie Tom Lewis for the all time lowest round at The Open by an amateur. He had five birdies and no bogeys. Today he is +1 for the championship.

Playing in his second Open, the University of Louisville senior is on a good run of form. He qualified to play in the recent US Open at Torrey Pines and achieved 14th place as an amateur in the BMW International Open in Germany. He is also twice European Amateur Champion.

His stats this week show a 336 yard longest drive, 69% fairways hit, 76% greens in regulation and 1.77 in putting, slightly above the field average of 1.67.

Matthias turns pro tomorrow and will tee up at the Wales Open on the European Tour this week.

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