2) A legend will walk one final time over the Swilcan Bridge
Legendary golfer Tom Watson will make his 38th, and final appearance in the British Open. He announced this event will be his last as a regular on the PGA Tour. However, when asked if he were to return if he makes the top 10 this week, he left the door open and suggested he would consider it.
At his press conference, he described what this week will feel like:
“It’s a little bit like death,” said Watson. “The finality of the end is here. But what tempers it are the memories. I still want to compete. I still want to hit shots that mean something. It’s not a ceremony at all. I’m out here to compete.”
Tom Watson has won five times at the British Open, in different locations: 1975- Carnoustie, 1977- Turnberry, 1980- Muirfield, 1982- Royal Troon, and 1983- Birkdale.
In 2009, he almost pulled a win for the ages that may have rivaled the great Jack Nicklaus’ 1986 win at the Masters at age 49. Tom Watson would have bested that feat by 13 years, and nearly pulled off the unthinkable. The site of his second Open Championship would not have been scripted any better. If you watched it, then mostly likely you were pulling for him to do it one more time.
It will be an emotional time for everyone associated with the game of golf. His final walk over the historic Swilkin bridge, a piece of the mystic of St. Andrews has been witness to so many moments in golf. The King Arnold Palmer bid farewell in 1995, the Golden Bear Jack Nicklaus took one last crossing in 2005. Now, it’s Tom Watson’s turn. As a fan, we hope that will be on Sunday for all to see.
We wish you the best of luck and will look for you this weekend, Mr. Watson!