Wednesday, 19 September 2012

The British Open - Strokes adventure Golf, Margate

The British Open returns to Strokes in Margate this weekend for I believe the 4th time in its history. A tough challenge for the best of players so who does the PP think will be shining on the greens and who will see their challenge cruelly die on the legendary Heartbreak Ridge?

With a strong field confirmed for the event including a powerhouse of International competitors it will be a monumental scrap to secure a place in the top 18 for the final round of the weekend.

So who will make it?

I predict, In no particular order, the following will be contesting the last round:

  • Marc Chapman
  • Johan Ahlander
  • Michael Smith
  • Jouni Valkjärvi
  • Sean Homer
  • Mattias Ståhl
  • Andy Exall
  • Adam Kelly
  • James Rutherford
  • Björn Dinau
  • Tony Kelly
  • John McIver
  • Petri Tossavainen
  • Karsten Hein
  • Torgny Kjellström
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • Maths Svensson
  • Lutz Brune

8 Brits and 10 Internationals. Some big names failing to make it but c'est la vie. I am sure there are players who are convinced they will be in the mix come Sunday afternoon who are not on the 18 above - time will tell if PP is right or wrong.

So, next up, will there be a new course record at the weekend? 30 has been shot twice and there have been numerous 31's and 32's over the years. But sub 30? Now there is a challenge. 7 aces and no dropped shots. Or 8 aces and a 3 and so on and so forth. Sounds easy but the best of the best have played the course and no-one has managed it yet. There have been players getting very close... and there are the requisite number of aceable holes on the course. Get through 7, 8 and 11 without dropping a shot and hitting the final seven holes 3 under or better and the course record is possible.

So will it go?

I think finally it will. And perhaps we will see 2 or 3 sub 30's by the end of the event.

Who will get it?

3 names spring to mind.

1) Michael Smith - the Terminator of minigolf. If he can take on the course rather than let it boss him, then yes, Smith is the man to do it

2) Adam Kelly - The young master who recently shot the lowest ever round by a UK minigolfer with a 20 on Eternite. Can't see it happening consistently but the 'lightning in a bottle' round could come from Kelly Jr.

3) Björn Dinau - the classiest player in the field. Has unfinished business with Strokes so my money is on Mr Dinau to be the first (and maybe even the only) one to shoot this milestone.

And finally.

Who will win?

After the epic top 5 UK players clean sweep result last year I do not think we will see any repeat in 2012. Can see one, possibly 2 Brits in the top 5 but I think it will be business as usual again with the Internationals taking the win this year.

And although the returning 'Strokes' champions will be close - step forward Ståhl, Kjellström and Valkjärvi - I think this year we will see a new British Open Champion. The peoples favourite...

Mr Björn Dinau

A popular winner and an all round nice guy.

Until next time.


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