Rory Mcllroy

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The French Open tennis Grand Slam began with early round play a couple days ago and a summary of who’s in and who’s out (e.g. what happened Serena?) will be coming out soon. Plus, cheap you won’t want to miss my notoriously wrong picks. But the big story now is what has happened off the court.

This has been a busy time for gossiping golfers and tennis players. The huge headline is that our favorite sports power couple Rory McIlroy and Caroline Wozniacki have broken up just weeks after their wedding invitations had been sent out. The big question was who will recover first?

This past week it has become very apparent on who is struggling and who is not. Rory recovered so strong that he won the BMW PGA Championship in Virginia Water, England on Sunday. He finished out his winning round with a birdie and seemed to find an escape from his personal drama out on the course. However we must keep in mind Rory was the one to break off the engagement (over the phone!) so we cannot help but wonder if this was somewhat of a weight lifted off of his shoulders.

Photo: Darko Vojinovic, AP

Photo: Darko Vojinovic, AP

However for Caroline it seems like the weight of the world is crashing down on her!

In her first round at the French Open she had a pretty tough first-round draw. She had to face off against number 64 ranked Yanina Wickmayer. Wozniacki was ranked number 12 and it seemed like she should win without issue, but Wickmayer is an excellent player who was once ranked number 12 and was a semifinalist at the 2009 United States Open. We also need to remember that Wozniacki has had a season filled with injuries. She has endured injuries to her wrist and knee and has not been fully focused on her tennis career.

So the big question remains, was it the breakup that accounts for her loss? Or is it the slew of other factors? With a final score of 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-2, Wozniacki is out of the French Open in the first round and questions came flying. She responded: “I don’t really want to talk about my personal life.” She has admitted to the breakup being a bit of a shock and we know that that must have some affect one her personally.

Our hearts go out to Caroline Wozniacki and we hope she will recover from her heartbreak.

A big shout out and thanks to Smashing intern and Lehigh University golfer Nicole Feierberg for the research for this article.

Smashing Golf & Tennis - Made in Chicago

Smashing Golf & Tennis – Made in Chicago

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Woods British
Professional golf’s oldest major, viagra sale The (British) Open Championship, capsule begins on Thursday in Lancashire, nurse England.  As the oldest of golf’s ‘majors’, the 141st Open Championship will challenge the best golfers in the world to some of the most difficult conditions.  With a 6 hour time difference, live rounds on ESPN will begin in the wee hours of the morning here in the US, but will still draw viewers anxious to watch the best golfers in the world crumble under pressure on such a unforgiving course.   Bloody fun to watch, if you ask me.  Here’s why:
What You Need To Know:
  • As the 3rd of golf’s 4 ‘majors’ (1st: The Masters in April; 2nd: The US Open in June; 4th: The PGA Championship in August) the British Open is the only major tournament not hosted in the United States.
  • The Tournament is actually called “The Open Championship” but has been coined the “British Open” by Americans to distinguish it from the US Open in August.  For style points this weekend,  refer to it as “The Open”.
  • The annual tournament rotates between nine different ‘links’ courses in England and Scotland – the original birthplace of golf.  The Championship is played on a links style golf course, the oldest style of golf course that features coast lines, deep sand bunkers (pot bunkers), thick rough, uneven and fast fairways.  With no tree lines, players are left out in the open to battle the elements.
  • This year, the tournament will be contested at Royal Lytham & St. Annes Golf Club in Lancashire, England,  July 19-22.

Royal Lytham and St. Annes will prove to be a "major" challenge this week

 

  • On top of a treacherous golf course, players will have to mentally and physically overcome the extreme English weather to claim the title. Heavy rains and howling winds are common place at all Open Championships.

Modern golf’s origins can be traced to 15th century Scotland, and this Championship is a week to pay homage to golf’s roots and history.  The first Open Championship was played in 1860.

Unpredictable is the best word to describe the Open Championship. Creativity, strength of mind and body, and a little bit of luck will determine the Champion.  Nine out of the last 10 Major Champions were first time winners, so it’s hard to put your money on the regular favorites, but here are my recommendations on who to watch this week.

Players to Watch:

Tiger Woods is looking capture his 4th Open Championship and take yet another step to rebounding back to the golf legend he once was. Tiger would regain his place as the #1 player in the world with a win this week.  With 3 wins this season, and a few missed cuts, Tiger isn’t as consistent as he used to be, but is still an early favorite this weekend.

Phil Mickelson

Phil Mickelson came in 2nd in last year’s Championship, and is argued to be the best player to have never won a British Open.

Irish hopes rest with Rory Mcllroy and Padraig Harrington. Mcllroy has seemed to run out of steam as of late.  Some attribute that to his blossoming relationship with Danish tennis star Caroline Wozniacki.

Mcllroy and Wozniacki have been dating more than a year.

Since they started dating both have gained and lost their respective sports’ number 1 ranking. What ever happened to love conquers all?! I would never count out a talent like McIlroy, who grew up playing golf in these conditions.

Harrington won this Championship two years in a row (’07 and ’08).  With an easy smile and Irish accent he’s always a hometown favorite.

 

What’s Next:

The first foursomes that make the cut from Thursday and Friday’s 72-hole challenge, will be  teeing off at 6:00AM on Saturday and Sunday.  You might be rolling in from the night before just in time to catch The Open!  Wake up with the British Open Thursday through Sunday on ESPN as coverage lasts all morning long.  I know I will be enjoying my breakfast with a side of golf.  Hey, take some inspiration after watching with you out on the golf course for an afternoon round.

All times EST

Thursday July 19th 5:00AM–3:00PM

Friday July 20th 5:00AM–3:00PM

Saturday July 21st 7:00AM–2:30PM

Sunday July 22nd 8:00AM–1:30PM ESPN

Sunday 3:00PM–6:00PM ABC (tape delay)

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