As I write this the name of Tom Watson sits at the top of the Open Championship leaderboard. The winner here 32 years ago is four-under-par through 13 holes. It’s pretty unlikely the 59-year-old, five-time Open winner is going to stay at the head of the field for too long, but I’m enjoying this bit of nostalgia while it lasts.
This is Watson’s 32nd Open start. The only Championships he’s missed since winning on his debut back in 1975 were those of 1996 and 2007. He’s won five times, and finished in the top-10 on four further occasions. He’s made the cut 22 times and has a scoring average of 72.42.
It’s quite incredible to think that, with those five victories and all the in-the-money finishes he’s collected just £368,592 in prize money at the Open Championship (roughly half what this year’s winner will receive.) His biggest cheque came in 2003 when he earned £42,000 for finishing in a tie for 18th.
Watson’s lowest Open round was a 64 in the third round at Muirfield in 1980 and his highest was an 82 at Carnoustie in 1999. He’s a total of +70 for the 107 rounds he’s played in the Open and has recorded 44 rounds under par (28 of them in the 60s).
He’s now through 14 and is still four-under. As a further point of interest – the oldest ever Open winner was Old Tom Morris who was 46 when he won in 1867.