Jun 08, 2015 | 08:52 am

New Home For The Open

Just as we’re about to start watching the U.S. Open on a new network, Fox Sports, for the first time, the network that lost America’s National Championship has picked up another major event. Beginning in 2017, NBC Sports Group—which includes NBC and Golf Channel—will broadcast the British Open, as well as the Women’s British Open, Senior Open Championship, British Amateur, and the Walker Cup and Curtis Cup when they are played in Britain. The new deal, which starts with the 2017 Open Championship at Royal Birkdale, brings The Open and Women’s Open back to broadcast TV (as opposed to cable) for the first time in eight years, while marking the first time Golf Channel will have live coverage of a men’s major. It will also bring the fourth women’s major to Golf Channel, and will include live Spanish-language coverage of The Open and Women’s Open on NBC Universo. Furthermore, Golf Channel will cover Open qualifying events, produce documentaries, conduct a U.S. tour of the Claret Jug, and work with the R&A to showcase the organization’s global youth initiatives in golf.

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Jun 05, 2015 | 10:49 am

Woods Shoots 63!

As her famous unlce struggled to a 73 at The Memorial, his niece bested him by 10 shots. Posting a course-record tying 63, the 24 year old put on a ball-striking clinic at the Manulife LPGA Classic in Canada, hitting all 14 fairways and 16 of 18 greens at Whistle Bear Golf Club in Ontario. Tiger, by comparison, hit just four fairways at Muirfield Village. After missing the cut in her last five starts, C. Woods could use a good week to avoid dropping in the tour’s priority ranking with a re-shuffle just three weeks away.

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Jun 04, 2015 | 06:20 am

Tom’s Time

Ben Crenshaw’s sentimental journey around Augusta National earlier this year reminds us that we have become very familiar with an aging group of golf superstars making their final visits to major championships. There will be one more next month when Tom Watson plays in his final British Open. As reported in the International Business Times, last year at Royal Liverpool was supposed to be the swan song for the five-time Open Champion, but the R&A gave him special dispensation to play once more at the home of golf. Watson says his goal this year is to walk across the Swilcan Bridge on Sunday, which he would do with son Michael by his side as caddie. Although Watson’s recent major record isn’t good—he missed the cut at this year’s Masters, hasn’t played in the U.S. Open since 2010, and has missed the cut or not played in the PGA Championship since 2002—who can forget his incredible performance at Turnberry in 2009 when he reached a playoff and finished second? No matter when Tom Watson leaves the Open Championship stage, you can bet the cheers will be heard throughout St. Andrews—and beyond.

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Jun 03, 2015 | 01:57 pm

Less Bunkers, More Trouble

It seems like every year Jack Nicklaus has tweaked his baby, Muirfield Village, in some way. Since it opened in 1974, he has changed every hole at least once. This year it's the 18th, where he eliminated six bunkers and lengthened the hole by 44 yards. Players can blame Robert Garrigus, who flew the collection of nine bunkers down the right and drove the ball within 76 yards of the green on the 444-yard hole at the 2013 Memorial. The three remaining bunkers, which stretch from 285 yards to about 360 yards from the tee, are more penal, both deeper and steeper, making any approach to the green out of them very difficult. Now players will have to play left of them and be left with "a very significant shot in," said Nicklaus.

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