The media horde is thronging around the entrance to the interview room as I type this. The numbers have been swelling for the last 15 minutes and the buzz of anticipation has been getting steadily louder. Ah, and there’s the announcement. “Tiger Woods will be in the interview room in one minute.”
There’s now been a complete exodus from the media centre and a logjam at the door to the interview room. Mike and Neil have joined the masses to see if the World Number 1 can be pressed into letting his guard down… news of that to follow.
St Andrews is unlike any of the other Opens I’ve been to for Golf Monthly. Partly it’s because of the town’s amazing history and the golfing gravitas that lingers on every corner. Mainly though, it’s because of the centralisation of everything here. As an example, the Media Centre is right beside the R&A clubhouse, the first tee is a flick with a wedge away from where I’m currently sitting.
As a spectator, one minute you can watch players putting on the famous 18th green, the next you can be in the heart of the town, looking at the shops, having a pint or sitting down for a meal.
Then, when the golf’s over for the day, the festivities commence. Last night the streets were buzzing – I passed a huge crowd of people enjoying the calm and warm late evening, and a pint or two, outside the Dunvegan. In the group there were Brits, Americans, Europeans, boys, girls, young and old. They were laughing and joking as they discussed their bets for the week and who they’d be out watching come Thursday.
Then into the pubs where, even this early in the week, it’s standing room early. Ma Bells was still rocking at 1am when I decided to call it a night and there were people dancing on a table in 1 Golf Place as I passed on the way back to our lodgings at University Hall. St Andrews is the home of golf and it’s throwing a massive house party.
Update on Tiger is that, as hard as they tried, the British press were unable to eek anything out of him about his private life. He did, however, divulge that he’s using a Nike putter this week. He’s ditched the faithful Scotty Cameron that’s holed so many crucial, tournament winning putts over the last 15 years.