How Tiger Woods made one Open competitor freeze up – twice
When it comes to horses for courses, no one’s closer to the triple crown at Royal Liverpool than Matthew Jordan. The 27-year-old Englishman has been a Hoylake member since age 7, and he believes he won three straight club championships – because “people like my dad were playing,” he adds – before shifting his focus to elite amateur competition.
This week, Jordan is back at his stomping grounds. This time, though, he’ll be playing a major championship – and he’ll be hitting the opening tee shot Thursday morning to kick off the 151st Open Championship.
On Monday, Jordan ventured into the interview room before heading out to see the course for the first time in a couple weeks. He was asked his thoughts on the new par-3 17th hole, which Jordan said could lack drama if there’s no wind and the greens don’t firm up. He also was intrigued himself to find out which Royal Liverpool will show up – the 2006 version that was “completely burnt out,” or the 2014 version that was “soft and the scoring was really good.”
Jordan attended both of those Opens, and he has his fair share of memories. A couple stand out, both involving Tiger Woods.
“In ’06, I think I was more bothered about getting signatures than anything else and kind of starstruck,” Jordan recalled. “I remember seeing Tiger in ’06 on the putting green, and I just could not approach him. I think I saw him actually when it was in ’14, as well, and I still couldn’t approach him then. … He walked through the clubhouse in ’14 on a Sunday trying to register, and I just froze. And then again, as I say, in ’06 he was on the putting green and I don’t think I moved for 20 minutes.
“He was my kind of hero, and being able to see him in the flesh and watching him do what he did, especially around your home course, was immense.”