An open-and-shut case of continental divide
I love Morning Read, especially the letters, which give an American perspective on current golf news.
All of the writers refer to the competition due to take place at Royal Portrush as the British Open. It is not the British Open; it is The Open. All of the rest need a prefix: U.S., Canadian, etc. The Open does not.
Editor’s note: I get this sort of observation a lot, especially during British Open week, and George Buchanan played along nicely in fielding my response. Here it is:
Thank you for taking the time to write and for sharing your views. We value your opinion and your readership. Your kind words are much appreciated.
On this side of the Atlantic, we modify “Open” with “British” for the sake of clarity. Simply put, we’ve got our Open, and you’ve got yours. Yes, your Open predates ours by 35 years, but the Scots’ successful exporting of the game has created national opens worldwide, as you note. Besides, it’s the style of the Associated Press, the arbiter of most publishing matters, to use “British Open” and not “Open Championship.” It’s also much clearer in headlines.
You likely won’t agree with that response, but it’s how we do things over here. You’ve probably also noted how we’ve tweaked a few other words in our common language, such as “color,” “honor,” et al. We’re still a bit giddy from that independence thing back in 1776.
Enjoy this week’s British Open/Open Championship, and best wishes for the rest of the 2019 golf season.
Golf’s top stars owe a debt to future generations
I absolutely agree with reader Jerome Koncel (“From the Morning Read inbox,” July 17).
It is the responsibility of today's star players to grow the game for tomorrow's generation. It's clear that they earn huge amounts of money, and many of them contribute to charities generously. But with TV coverage hidden behind paywalls, unless the top players are prepared to invest their time by playing exhibitions and making personal appearances for token fees, golf is not going to reach a new generation of youngsters, and golf clubs will face an uncertain future.
Many golf clubs in England and Scotland have pictures from the 1950s and 1960s showing top British pros playing exhibition matches, sometimes the day after the Open Championship. Today's pros are not interested without a huge fee, so it doesn't occur now.
Golf needs its stars to get kids into the game, and it isn't happening.
Apply some horse sense to PGA Tour purses
Alex Miceli is right (“PGA Tour goes too far in spreading wealth,” July 9).
Tour event winners should get more than 18 percent of the total purse. Even winning horses get 60 percent.
That’s 100 copies sold before 1st page is written
John Hawkins’ writing is compelling, action-packed, full of pleasant reverses and also refreshingly irreverent. Hawkins’ post on his 100 majors is a book waiting to happen that about 20 golf writers could pen, but they shouldn’t and wouldn’t do it with Hawkins’ style (“British Open earns award for major drama,” July 16).
We hope that Hawkins takes the plunge, and we would buy 100 copies of it and give it out to our friends if he does.
Enjoy a Guinness back there for us.
Drew and Sara Sanders
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