Shane Lowry, the defending Open champion, believes firm protocols imposed on players this week at Royal St George’s are worth it in exchange for large galleries. 까지 32,000 per day can attend the Open, which was postponed a year ago after coronavirus took hold.
Zach Johnson, 그만큼 2015 champion, and the South African Louis de Jager withdrew on Monday from the 149th Open after testing positive for Covid-19. Those in the field must remain in household bubbles of no more than four people with visits to restaurants, bars and supermarkets prohibited. Such rules are alien in particular to those based in the US but Lowry is perfectly content.
“The R&A have done a great job and they’re doing a good job this week of trying to keep us away from as many people as they can,” Lowry said. “I know there’s going to be 32,000 people here. I think that’s great for the tournament, but us as players, I’m in my own bubble at my own house and I’m not leaving. I’m not allowed to do any of that [other] stuff and I think that’s good. I don’t want to be here playing in front of nobody, so I think it’s great that there’s 32,000 people and I was very excited when I heard that there was going to be that many people here.”
Lowry will spend the week in a house with his wife, caddie and manager. “I don’t think I’ll be doing anything different than I normally do,” the 2019 champion said. “I come to the golf course, I play, I go home and we have dinner in the house. And that’s it. That’s all you do, just watch a bit of TV and have some food in the evenings. You don’t do anything else the week of big tournaments.”
Lowry admitted trying to retain the Claret Jug 24 rather than 12 months after claiming it is a strange concept. The 34-year-old ended his wait for a major win amid moving scenes at Royal Portrush. “I’ve defended tournaments before but I’ve never come and defended a tournament of this magnitude,” Lowry said. “Everything that happens for me this week is kind of new.”
Ryan Moore, who had qualified for the Open via the John Deere Classic, has opted to remain in the US as he manages a back problem. Adam Long, Sam Horsfield and Dylan Frittelli will come into the draw.