Old Course to host 150th Open Championship in 2021

The worst kept secret in golf is finally revealed: St Andrews will host the 150th Open Championship at the Old Course.


Last week it was confirmed that the 150th Open Championship will be played at the Old Course, St Andrews in 2021.Having initially been established in 1860, the first Open to be played at the Old Course was in 1873, with Tom Kidd winning the competition that was contested over just 18 holes. It will be the 30th occasion that the Old Course has hosted golf’s oldest major. Whilst 2021 will mark 161 years since the first staging of the competition at Prestwick Golf Club, the tournaments missed because of the two world wars mean that 2021 will be the 150th edition. Famous winners of the Open at St Andrews include Sam Snead, Peter Thomson, Jack Nicklaus, and Tiger Woods. The most recent edition of the competition to be played here was in 2015, where American Zach Johnson triumphed after a four-hole playoff against Louis Oosthuizen and Marc Leishman. The five-year rotation for hosting the competition that began in 1990 should have seen the Open return to St Andrews in 2020, but it was adjusted by golf’s governing bodies to coincide with this particular milestone. Of the announcement, R&A chief executive Martin Slumbers said, “St Andrews is the most appropriate place for the 150th playing and we are working on initiatives to mark that achievement. “There is something magical about an Open Championship at St Andrews and this one will be very special. “Traditionally hosted in mid-July, the current Open champion is Jordan Spieth, who won by three strokes from Matt Kuchar at last year’s competition at Royal Birkdale in Liverpool. This year’s tournament will be played at Carnoustie, whilst the Claret Jug will be contested at Royal Portrush and Royal St George’s in 2019 and 2020 respectively. In conjunction with the announcement of the 2021 event, the venues for 2022 and 2023 were also discussed. Without specifying the course, it was announced that 2022’s competition will take place in England, meaning that the 2023 edition will be held at Muirfield for the first time since 2013.Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon was amongst those who voiced her delight at the announcement last week, commenting, “As the world’s oldest and most prestigious professional golf championship, The Open is synonymous with both St Andrews and Scotland and I’m de-lighted St Andrews will welcome its 150th staging in 2021.”This year will see the world famous Old Course play host to the Senior Open Championships for the first time in the competition’s 31-year existence. Run by the R&A, the event is open to players over the age of 50 and is a key part of the European Seniors Tour schedule, being designated as a major in 2003. The current champion is Bernhard Langer, who won the tournament last year at Royal Porthcawl for the third time since moving to the Senior Tour.


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