Golf

2018 Open Championship Preview: Schedule, How to watch

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2018 Open Championship Preview: Schedule, How to watch

It's wide Open.

This week's 147th Open Championship in eastern Scotland at treacherous Carnoustie Golf Links boasts as deep a field of stars as we've seen in this championship since 2015 at St. Andrews.

Of course, it certainly helps to have three-time champ Tiger Woods back for his first start in The Open since he missed the cut at St. Andrews, a course he had won at in 2000 and 2005.

But this appears to be a different Tiger. He's healthier and he's coming in hot off a top 4 at Quicken Loans National a couple weeks back.

Make no mistake, Tiger Woods in a major championship is always must-watch material.

Even his former swing coach Hank Haney said on his SiriusXM Radio show this week that he's expecting Woods to win.

If he does so it would be his first major in 10 years. No small task with the strength of this year's field.

Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy, and Jordan Spieth figure to be some of the major challengers. U.S. Open runner-up Tommy Fleetwood also happens to own the course record at Carnoustie (63), which shouldn't surprise anyone considering his experience on links golf courses. There are a couple guys who aren't quite household names to watch out for just because of how in-form they are. Kevin Na, who just won in West Virginia and Francesco Molinari. Molinari won at Quicken Loans National in Bethesda convincingly and brings plenty of links golf experience to this week.

Remember the last time Carnoustie held The Open?

Sergio Garcia missed a 10-foot par putt on the 72nd hole and Padraig Harrington made a closing double bogey after finding the famous burn (water hazard) and both went to a 4-hole playoff.

People are quick to tell you Sergio whined after losing in that playoff, calling out the golfing gods as being against him, but let's remember that he hit the flagstick from 260 yards on the par 3 in that playoff.

How many players can say they did that in the history of Open playoffs?

Both are back this year along with the man who threw this championship away in 1999, Jean Van De Velde. Though he's not officially competing this time around.

Should be another instant classic this year.

RELATED: Open Championship predictions and picks

2018 Open Championship Information:

What: The 147th Open Championship

When: Thursday, July 19- Sunday, July 22, 2018

Where: Carnoustie Golf Links, Angus, Scotland

TV Channel: Golf Channel, NBC

Livestream: TBA

2018 Open Championship Odds, Betting Information:

DraftKings and FanDuel have tournaments open for The Open Championship, as does GolfChannel.com's Fantasy Golf game.

World number 1 Dustin Johnson just barely clipped 2014 champ Rory McIlory as the betting favorite, with 11-1 odds.

Johnson comfortably led the U.S. Open by four through 36 last month before a 77 brought him back to reality.

Rory McIlroy, who is in the midst of a relatively strong season though still looking for his first major since the 2014 PGA, has 12-1 odds of winning.

Then you have defending champ Jordan Spieth at 16-1 who is a great pick because he plays well in this championship. Remember when he finished one stroke out of a playoff here in 2015? Justin Rose is a good pick at 16-1 as well, coming off yet another close call at the U.S. Open. He's got a second major in him. Lastly, Rickie Fowler played in the final group at The Open in 2014. Bad news, it was with Rory McIlroy who was on fire, but with the pressure on Fowler didn't miss a putt inside ten feet all day. Look for his steely nerves to help again this year.

2018 Open Championship Betting Favorites

Dustin Johnson: 11-1
Rory McIlroy: 12-1
Jordan Spieth: 16-1
Rickie Fowler: 16-1
Justin Rose: 16-1
Tommy Fleetwood: 16-1
Tiger Woods: 20-1
Brooks Koepka: 20-1
Justin Thomas: 20-1
Jon Rahm: 20-1

Tiger Woods-Phil Mickelson match to include $10M donation for COVID-19 relief efforts

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Tiger Woods-Phil Mickelson match to include $10M donation for COVID-19 relief efforts

HOBE SOUND, Fla. (AP) -- The next match involving Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson involves a $10 million donation for COVID-19 relief efforts, along with plenty of bragging rights in a star-powered foursome May 24 at Medalist Golf Club.

Turner Sports announced more details Thursday for "The Match: Champions for Charity," a televised match between Woods and Peyton Manning against Mickelson and Tom Brady.

Medalist is where Woods plays when he's at home. Manning and Brady said they have played there before -- Manning running out of golf balls before reaching the 18th, Brady posting a 106.

The format will be better ball for the front nine and modified alternate shot on the back nine, meaning both players hit tee shots and they take turns from there.

It will be simulcast on May 24 at 3 p.m. EDT on TNT, TBS, truTV and HLN, along with pre-match coverage available on the Bleacher Report app.

WarnerMedia and the four players will collectively make a charitable donation of $10 million to benefit various relief efforts locally and nationally. Turner said the match includes a partnership with the "All In Challenge," an initiative that provides food for those in need.

Mickelson beat Woods in a playoff under the lights in Las Vegas over Thanksgiving weekend in 2018. This time, they are bringing in two of the NFL's greatest quarterbacks to add to the entertainment.

The announcement came with a video interview by TNT's Ernie Johnson of the four players, in which Brady said he wanted Woods as a partner until Manning's father called to switch the teams.

The match will be held one week after live golf returns to television for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic shut down the PGA Tour and other tours around the world. Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson will play a charity match against Rickie Fowler and Matthew Wolff at Seminole Golf Club, one of Florida's most famous courses that will have a televised event for the first time.

The Open Championship won't be played for 1st time since 1945

The Open Championship won't be played for 1st time since 1945

The British Open will not be played this year for the first time since 1945, golf officials announced Monday as they tried to reconfigure a major championship schedule that would end with the Masters being played two weeks before Thanksgiving.

Still to be determined is when - or even if - golf can resume depending on the spread of COVID-19 that has shut down sports worldwide.

The R&A announced that the British Open, scheduled for July 16-19 at Royal St. George's in England, will be pushed back until July 15-18 in 2021, leaving the 150th Open for St. Andrews in 2022.

"I can assure everyone that we have explored every option for playing The Open this year, but it is not going to be possible," R&A chief Martin Slumbers said.

The Masters, which was supposed to start Thursday, was rescheduled for Nov. 12-15. That would follow the PGA Championship on Aug. 6-9 at Harding Park in San Francisco and the U.S. Open - still at Winged Foot in New York - for Sept. 17-20.

"We hope the anticipation of staging the Masters Tournament in the fall brings a moment of joy to the Augusta community and all those who love the sport," Augusta National Chairman Fred Ridley said. "We want to emphasize that our future plans are incumbent upon favorable counsel and direction from health officials."

Golf's major organizations have been trying to piece together a puzzle for the last three weeks and each agreed to announce their schedules at the same time in a show of collaboration. Still missing is the starting line, along with details on what could be the most hectic pace golf has ever known.

The PGA Tour has the most moving parts, and it tentatively has planned to complete its FedEx Cup season close to schedule, with the Tour Championship wrapping up the postseason run on Labor Day. It also is contemplating putting tournaments in dates that previously belonged to the U.S. Open, British Open and Olympics.

"It's a complex situation, and we want to balance the commitments to our various partners with playing opportunities for our members - while providing compelling competition to our fans," PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan said. "But all of that must be done while navigating the unprecedented global crisis that is impacting every single one of us."

The new schedule features:

- Aug. 6-9: PGA Championship.

- Aug. 13-16: End of PGA Tour regular season at Wyndham Championship.

- Aug. 20-23: Start of FedEx Cup playoffs at The Northern Trust.

- Aug. 27-30: BMW Championship, second playoff event.

- Sept. 4-7: Tour Championship for the FedEx Cup.

- Sept. 17-20: U.S. Open at Winged Foot.

- Sept. 25-27: Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits.

It was not immediately clear how the teams from Europe and the United States would be determined for the Ryder Cup, although European captain Padraig Harrington has said he would not be opposed to picking all 12 players.

For the 24 players, that means going from what long has been regarded as the toughest test in golf to what has become the most tiresome three days in golf at the Ryder Cup.

Other details still to be sorted out is U.S. Open qualifying. Like everything else, it all starts with when golf resumes. The next tournament still on the schedule is Colonial on May 21-24, though that appears unlikely.

Ridley said every player who has received invitations to play the Masters in April will stay on the list, with more details to be sorted out later. He also said the Augusta National Women's Amateur was canceled, and every player can keep their spots for next year provided they don't turn pro.

Winged Foot just north of New York City is about 5 miles away from a hot spot for the new coronavirus. Construction for the U.S. Open was stopped two weeks ago as the USGA tried to determine its best course. For now, it's to stay in New York with a September date.

The last time the U.S. Open was this late in the year was in 1913, when amateur Francis Ouimet took down Harry Vardon and Ted Ray at Brookline to put golf on the map in the United States.

The U.S. Senior Open at Newport Country Club and the U.S. Senior Women's Open at Brooklawn Country Club in Connecticut have been canceled.

The PGA Championship, which last year moved to May for the first time in some 70 years, returns to August at Harding Park in San Francisco.

The British Open last was canceled in 1945 because of World War II. Slumbers said those with tickets or hospitality package can use them in 2021 or get a full refund.

Meanwhile, the claret jug stays with Shane Lowry of Ireland, who won last year at Royal Portrush. He won't have possession as long as Dick Burton, who won in 1939, the year before it was canceled because of the war.

Lowry said in a video tweet he understood and supported the R&A's decision.

"You can trust me when I say the claret jug is going to be in safe hands for another year," Lowry said.