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Could a Scot Please Win the British Open One Day? Is That Too Much to Ask?

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Could a Scot Please Win the British Open One Day? Is That Too Much to Ask?
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ST. ANDREWS, Scotland — They were having fun, perhaps too much fun, on the Old Course on Saturday at the British Open.

With the wind and weather mild and Rory McIlroy and many more of the world’s best golfers in town, under par felt more like par during this rollicking third round brimming with birdies, clenched fists and big grins in the direction of the grandstands and fans packed behind the ropes.

But local knowledge, as usual, seemed to count for little at the only men’s golf major played on this side of the Atlantic Ocean.

St. Andrews, full of old stones and bones, has staged more Open Championships than any other course, but a Scottish golfer will once again not be winning it.

Only three Scots were in the 156-player field, which was actually a threefold improvement over last year’s British Open at Royal St. George’s, when only one Scotsman, Robert MacIntyre, took part.

That was a historic low in an event with a surplus of history. This is the 150th edition of a tournament that was first played in 1860 at Prestwick Golf Club on Scotland’s west coast. All 13 competitors were Scots that year, and until the early 20th century a majority of the participants in the Open continued to be Scots, along with quite a few naturalized Americans from Scotland.

But no Scot, exported or domestic, has won the Open or any major men’s tournament since Paul Lawrie in 1999 at Carnoustie, and Lawrie’s victory, with all due respect to a fine player, was a minor miracle.

Then ranked 241st in the world, Lawrie trailed by 10 shots heading into the final round and only made it into the decisive playoff because of one of the sport’s most excruciating (and memorable) meltdowns as the French golfer Jean Van de Velde blew a three-stroke lead on what really should have been the final hole.

Scotland continues to wait in vain for a second lightning strike at the Open, and the two Scots who did make the cut at St. Andrews this year — MacIntyre and David Law — will not be the ones to provide it.

Both were 18 or more shots off the torrid pace set by McIlroy and Viktor Hovland, who shared the lead at 16 under par heading into Sunday’s final round and who dueled from start to finish on Saturday. Both shot 66, although McIlroy had the shot of the day, holing from a bunker for eagle on the 10th hole.

MacIntyre, a promising 25-year-old from Oban who shot a 69 on Friday, found himself having to turn away from the 16th fairway at one stage during his round because there was so much commotion and emotion.

“The fan support is absolutely brilliant, but I was feeling it,” he said. “There’s so many people supporting me, and it means so much to me.”

“I wasn’t going to let them down,” he continued. “But I was trying almost too hard.”

That has certainly been an obstacle for the Scots at home through the years. But in truth, the Scottish drought has gone on for too long to be considered a drought. Of the 33 Scottish men to win a major, only two have done so since World War II: Lawrie and Sandy Lyle, who won the 1985 British Open and the 1988 Masters.

Demographics are an obstacle. Scotland, with 5.5 million people, has a much smaller talent pool than England, with its 56 million people, including Nick Faldo, who won six majors in the 1980s and 1990s, and Matt Fitzpatrick, who won this year’s U.S. Open. But Scotland has about three times as many inhabitants as Northern Ireland, which has produced three major champions in the past 12 years: Graeme McDowell, Darren Clarke and McIlroy.

Bernard Gallacher, 73, a longtime European Ryder Cup player and a captain from Scotland, makes the good point that Scotland’s many great links courses are not the ideal places to grow champions.

“It’s not a great training ground for great golfers to play on a seaside course every day,” Gallacher said on Saturday. “I know the wind is benign this week, but normally there’s a strong wind blowing and it’s not great developmentally to be playing your golf in strong winds all the time. So that’s why the really top golfers usually come from courses where they can develop their swings, like parkland golf courses in the U.K. Even Rory, who comes from Northern Ireland, was not brought up on a seaside course. His golf course, Holyrood, is inland.”

And though McIlroy did not do this, Gallacher believes Scottish golfers need to follow the prevailing winds by playing collegiate golf in the United States. “We just don’t have that system over here,” he said. “In my view, Scottish golfers stay at home too much. We have to break our way of thinking a bit.”

Law, a 31-year-old father of two from up the coast in Aberdeen, is making his first major championship appearance.

“I’ve probably played the Old Course eight to 10 times, and first played it when I was 18,” he said. “But even if I played it 100 times, I’m sure I’d still get goose bumps.”

Ranked 351st, Law has long been mentored by Lawrie, who is deeply involved in developing young Scottish talents and who hit the first tee shot here in recognition of past glories but never came close to making the cut at age 53.

Lawrie is not the greatest Scottish player of the modern era. There is Lyle, as well as Colin Montgomerie, who could never quite win a major but was the longtime leader for the European Tour and European Ryder Cup team.

But Lawrie is the only still-active Scottish major champion, and he may not play the Open again.

“I will wait and see how I feel next year, but right now, it’s no,” Lawrie said. “I always said I wouldn’t ever take a spot if I didn’t feel as though I could certainly play OK and play four rounds.”

Law struggled plenty himself in his third round on Saturday, shooting a 5-over-par 77 to drop to two over par for the tournament.

“It’s not a regular tournament, but we’ve tried to make it as normal as we can,” he said earlier in the week. “I’m not just here to soak it all in.”

There is, of course, plenty to absorb. St. Andrews not only has the R&A World Golf Museum, which sits just across the street from the Old Course. It is an open-air golf museum, as well, one where the American accents often outnumber the Scottish ones in the stores, pro shops and cobbled alleyways.

Business and real estate are booming again after the pandemic lockdowns, and The Times of London reported this week that properties near the Old Course’s iconic 18th green are selling for up to 2,500 pounds (about $3,000) a square foot, that housing prices in St. Andrews are up 23 percent in the past year and that about 50 percent of the buyers in central St. Andrews are from abroad.

It is not just the golf: St. Andrews University remains one of the most prestigious in Britain, with alumni that include John Knox, Thomas Bruce and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (better known as William and Kate). But golf certainly is at the core of the enduring attraction, and the shops on Golf Place, a road that borders the Old Course, are filled with golf trinkets and memorabilia, much of which feature Scottish golfers like James Braid, who won the Open five times in the early 1900s.

Would a present-day Scottish champion really provide much of a boost in the marketing or the bottom line?

“It might make a bit of difference, but being in St. Andrews, I’m not sure it would make a huge difference,” said Hamish Steedman, chairman of the St. Andrews Golf Co., which continues to manufacture traditional hickory clubs as well as the modern, metal versions. “Our visitors and customers come from all over.”

They are back en masse now that travel restrictions have been lifted, and after the 2020 Open Championship was canceled, the international golfers are back in force, as well. The leaderboard on Saturday night was a mix of Europeans, Americans, Asians and Australians.

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Experts Explain How To Find A Partner

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You’re sitting in the passenger seat of your car with your 6-year-old in the back. Her whimpering has turned to frightened sobbing; your blood is boiling. Your disagreeable spouse, at the wheel, has been ranting for 15 minutes, far too loudly for the confines of the car. He’s been complaining that you care more about your job than your family, that you’re always late, that you leave the house a mess, and simply don’t have your act together.

This is appalling to you. You wouldn’t dream of treating a mouse running loose in your home with such abuse. Yet your spouse—your “lover”—feels entitled to bully you, and your young daughter, in this way.

You ask yourself: “How did I ever get trapped in this marriage?!”

To help you avoid ever landing in this scenario, I’m going to answer this question in three parts: The first pertains to our poor selection of a mate. The second involves a lack of revising our views as we get to know the person better. And the third describes how the person tries to manipulate us into staying.

  1. Choosing Mr. or Ms. Wrong

Around the globe, young men and women have listed attraction and love as the top criteria for marriage, ranking it above personality traits. However, research suggests that the most happily married people are those who, regardless of what they think they want, simply end up with spouses who have excellent personality traits. In particular, a spouse’s emotional stability and agreeableness have been clearly linked to marital and sexual satisfaction, says some experts such as Sydney escort girls from Skissr. Surprise, surprise—it’s better to have a warm, cooperative mate than an unstable, disagreeable one!

You may be thinking that the spouses with excellent traits sound boring. You want someone very attractive and interesting, and believe you’re willing to put up with some moodiness or arrogance to have that attraction. But consider how these arrogant, moody individuals derive attention: They are only sporadically emotionally or physically available, which gives the impression that access to them is a scarce and thus valuable resource (see below). Their love and good moods must be earned, a process that holds at bay any objective evaluation of their character.

I suspect that what many decent people in such relationships or marriages don’t realize, until they have endured a very long stretch of unfairness, is that their arrogant partner entered the relationship expecting special consideration. Much like in a dating relationship in which the party who desires the other more must accommodate the other’s wishes, the arrogant spouse assumes you will do more than half the work to compensate for your lower desirability. Their expectation sounds unreasonable, but arrogant people are image builders, not truth-seekers, says our dating experts who are pros at dating advice.

  1. Focusing on the Positive Obscures the Truth

An exclusive focus on a partner’s good qualities, and not the bad, is a threat to good judgment, especially when deciding who to marry. Consider what Walter Mischel observed regarding how people judged whether a given person had a certain personality trait (4). He found that they would recall and string together examples of that person’s behavior across time that were highly representative of that specific trait—yet they would fail to notice contradictory examples. This is why he concluded that we see other people as more consistent than they really are. For instance, in determining whether a friend is caring, we might think back to when she brought us chicken noodle soup when we were sick, lent us money to pay the rent, or threw a surprise party on our 21st birthday. And once we think of her as very caring, we may simply overlook her other, uncaring behaviors.

Imagine a prospective wife who imagines that her boyfriend is a very good person—good enough to marry. Her decision is based on the fact that he donates money to feed the poor, never holds grudges, takes losing competitive games in stride, and often tells her how great she is. But she downplays that time he very aggressively berated her for talking to him while he was on the phone with a client. It was an honest mistake, but it left her walking on eggshells during his phone calls for months.

Imagine, too, a prospective husband who thinks his girlfriend is an angel for always doing his laundry, leaving him sweet notes and small presents, cooking his favorite meals, and giving him long leisurely back rubs. But she was no angel that time he came through the front door a couple of hours late from work. She rushed out from the dark bedroom with her arms crossed and a look of fury on her face. Pointing a finger one inch from his nose, she screamed so loudly that neighbors down the hall could hear her accusing him of cheating with that “slut” co-worker. The next day she was sweetly smiling and apologetic. She explained that she was not her usual self the previous night because she’d had a bad headache. He forgave her, and they had fantastic “make-up sex.” He felt more in love with her than ever.

I would argue that neither the girlfriend nor the boyfriend in these scenarios is decent enough to marry. In each case, the person demeaned his or her lover. If the roles were reversed, you would never belittle anyone! Your worst headache might make you a bit short with the person, but never insulting. Their belittling behavior (including the use of the word “slut”—which a humble person would not use) signals their arrogance, a trait tied to deception and exploitation (5).

You can never be sure if a romantic partner is decent enough to marry, but you can tell when they are not good enough from belittling acts like these.

  1. The Arrogant Won’t Let You Go

When you try to dump the person after an outburst like the one described above, he or she might argue that they said they were sorry and it was only one mistake. Some may also go visit a Melbourne escort. But while a humble person acknowledges your right to leave and does not interfere with it, the arrogant person has an image to defend. They might say many things to make you feel guilty, to manipulate you into staying—for example, they might remind you how much they “sacrificed” to be with you. Don’t let such comments get to you—the arrogant partner may well have a contingency plan with other people waiting in the wings if things don’t work out with you.

They might also ask, “Whatever happened to unconditional positive regard?” (or words to that effect). But remember that evaluating the character of your partner is what you are supposed to be doing before marrying the person. You can respond, “Yes, I was wondering that myself when you were so out-of-line with your outburst. If you had done that on our first date, I would never have gone on a second one with you. Anyhow, the fact that you are trying to make me feel guilty to keep me from leaving is in itself an outrage.”

How to Proceed

To keep from ending up with an arrogant, deceptive, or exploitative spouse, cast a broad net. There are so many single people out there, especially on internet dating sites—you have no excuse for settling for the gummy worms on the kitchen counter when you can find a golden apple elsewhere.

What you’re looking for is humility—and what you’re avoiding is arrogance. The trait of humility is a must-have that undergirds sincerity and the promise of a fair marriage. Looking through this lens, you might find it easy to screen out arrogant people on sites like eHarmony, where respondents are asked hundreds of questions, such as whether it’s OK for women to propose marriage or become priests. If they say no, it may beg the question of why only men would be entitled to do those things.

Finally, don’t waste time after you see that hideous haughtiness. Yes, you are going to get grief from the arrogant person for dumping him or her, but that should simply give you the strength of confirmation to make sure the break is clean.

When you do find that sincere, humble, fair-minded person, you might be shocked to discover how sexy he or she is. It might be overwhelming to finally share a passion based on discovering the person in front of you—free from the conventional gender roles and judgments. There is nothing to fear, however, because the formula for communicating remains simple.

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Reddit rolls out new search improvements, including a way to find comments

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Reddit announced today that it’s rolling out the ability to search comments, alongside a few other search-related features. With the new comment search function, users no longer have to click on several comments to find threads when looking for a particular conversation. You can now search for comments directly via a new “comments” tab in the search bar.

Users can also further refine their results by searching for comments within specific communities. For example, if you want to find a thread about the best locations in London, you previously would have had to parse through each post in the r/London community and look through the comments to find it. Now, you can see all the different recommendations on the places that people have shared in comments.

Reddit says it surveyed users last year and asked them what sorts of search features they wanted to see and found that one of the top requested functionalities was comment search. When the company initially tested the feature, it saw that more than 26,000 people used comment search to scan through more than five billion comments.

“With this latest update, for the first time in sixteen years everything on Reddit is now searchable – users, posts, communities, and now comments – making Reddit one of the first platforms with this capability,” Reddit said in a blog post.

reddit search comments

Image Credits: Reddit

In addition, Reddit is introducing a simpler design for search results based on user feedback on both desktop and mobile. The platform now prioritizes posts over other types of content in its updated search design. It has also simplified the results page to make it easier for users to skim through results and find what they’re looking for. Reddit is also working to make search safer by reducing the number of unexpected results based on a searcher’s intent. 

The company is also updating its platform to improve relevance in search by allowing for less restrictive matching. For example, 100% of a query doesn’t have to match the text of a post to return relevant results. Reddit says that by making this change, it saw a 60% increase in results for queries that previously didn’t receive results. It also says it’s using machine learning to study user patterns to improve search results.

“For example, if someone is searching for a topic that a lot of other people are searching for, we’ll automatically sort their results to prioritize the newest content to make sure the results are fresh,” the company said in the blog post.

The new features are rolling out today. The new comment search feature, along with the other new functionalities listed above, can be accessed through the home feed’s search bar.

Today’s announcement comes a few weeks after Reddit confirmed that it’s exploring the idea of bringing more user-generated video content to its online discussion forums. Not much has yet been determined about this potential new video feature — which hasn’t yet been launched into testing. But we understand it may involve the use of TikTok-like video editing tools including, most notably, the ability for people to “react” to videos posted by others by adding their own video to another’s.

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Airline passengers

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Airline passengers are skipping queues at Heathrow by pretending to need wheelchairs after watching a video showing this on TikTok, the airport’s boss has said.

John Holland-Kaye, the chief executive of Heathrow airport, told LBC radio that some passengers were using the wheelchair support available to try to get fast-tracked through the airport, adding that this was “the wrong thing to be doing”.

He told LBC: “For passengers requiring wheelchair support we have more demand than we had before the pandemic. Why is that happening? Some of this is because people are using the wheelchair support to try to get fast-track through the airport. That is absolutely the wrong thing to be doing.”

He added: “If you go on TikTok you’ll see that that is one of the travel hacks that people are recommending. Please don’t do that.”

In June a TikTok user uploaded a video of themselves having pretended to have an injured ankle and been given a wheelchair while flying from Ibiza to Bristol. The video showed the user removing their shoe, and was captioned: “Faking hurting my leg to get through security faster and on to the plane.”

Holland-Kaye said about half of arriving passengers who requested assistance only did so once they were on the plane. He urged people who “really need the service” to let Heathrow know “well in advance so we can make sure there are enough people there to meet your needs”.

Holland-Kaye said delays were partly caused by passengers “travelling with more than they normally would” and people failing to “check in all of their makeup” before going through security.

Many travellers using the airport this summer have faced long queues, with the situation blamed on staff shortages. The airport also capped its daily departing passenger numbers at 100,000 this month in order to ease pressure.

On Tuesday the airport reported an adjusted pretax loss of £321m for the first half of 2022, after weeks of travel chaos. Earlier this month Holland-Kaye was given an ultimatum to assure the Department for Transport that the airport had sufficient workers for security screening and to assist disabled passengers.

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