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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

My Women's British Open Preview

We've got two big tournaments this week, so today we'll prep for the biggest -- the RICOH Women's British Open.

I won't rehash the arguments about whether Inbee Park can get a Grand Slam this week or not. I've already covered that topic in an earlier post and will stick by my belief that if an Inbee win this week doesn't constitute a Grand Slam, then golf history MUST be rewritten to acknowledge all the "Grand Slams" that have already been won. As I pointed out in my previous post, if a Grand Slam is defined as winning all the available majors in a given calendar year, then that feat has been accomplished dozens of times by men and women alike. While the term "slam" comes from bridge and connotes winning all the available tricks (13), the term "grand slam" comes from baseball and has always been associated with the number 4.

At any rate, Inbee's quest to win 4 in a row is the big story this week. Of the last Opens, Jiyai Shin has 2 (2008 & 2012), Yani Tseng has 2 (2010 & 2011), and Catriona Matthew has 1 (2009). While Yani continues to struggle, both Jiyai and Catriona are proven links players who are playing reasonably well and could certainly be spoilers.

Other players are definitely playing well. In particular, Beatriz Recari, Karrie Webb, and Stacy Lewis all have to be taken as serious contenders, as each has multiple wins around the world this season. In addition, Karrie has won the Women's British Open 3 times (though only the 2002 win counts in her majors total).

The secondary storyline is whether an American can break the now double-digit win streak of foreign players in majors. (Foreign to us Americans, of course. You South Koreans out there are saying, "Foreigners? What foreigners?")

The Constructivist has a good summary of the main storylines over at Mostly Harmless. (This post also has links to two articles by Mechelle Voepel over at ESPNW, both of which are very informative.) He also has the results of Monday's final qualifying attempts. The biggest shock to me is that Mel Reid failed to qualify.

And as usual, Tony Jesselli has a very good preview of the event over at Tony's LPGA Report.

The main tournament page at LPGA.com is located at this link.

Here are the TV times posted at LPGA.com:
  • Aug 1: ESPN2 9:00 am-12:00 pm ET
  • Aug 2: ESPN2 9:00 am-12:00 pm ET
  • Aug 3: ESPN2 10:00 am-1:00 pm ET
  • Aug 4: ESPN2 10:00 am-1:00 pm ET
Note that it's ESPN2, not ESPN. It seems that ESPN is primarily covering PGA Tour events now while ESPN2 takes care of the other tours.

That should give you most of the info you need to really enjoy watching the RICOH. And by all means take time to read the two articles by Mechelle Voepel; TC did us all a favor when he included those links.

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