Morikawa and Watson to take part in 150th Open…


Defending Open champion Collin Morikawa will be among a host of golfers taking part in events to mark the 150th edition of the game’s oldest major.

With 150 days to go until the championship gets under way at St Andrews, the R&A has confirmed special events which will take place earlier in the week of the tournament. 

Among them will be a “Celebration of Champions”, featuring past winners of the Claret Jug, women’s major winners, men’s and women’s amateur champions and golfers with disabilities. 

Those already confirmed include Morikawa, who won last year at Royal St George’s, and five-time Open winner Tom Watson. 

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The field of 48 will play a four-hole exhibition over the first, second, 17th and 18th at the Old Course. 

“We are bringing together golf’s greatest names with current and future stars of the sport for a unique and very fitting exhibition over the Old Course,” R&A chief executive Martin Slumbers said. 

“They represent the past, present and future of this wonderful sport and reflect our purpose to ensure that golf is inclusive and accessible to everyone. 

“We are very much looking forward to welcoming fans from all over the world to St Andrews for the 150th Open and the R&A Celebration of Champions will be a real highlight in what already promises to be a very special week and a momentous occasion for sport.” 

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The Celebration of Champions will take place on Monday July 11 and will be broadcast on the Open’s website and social media channels.

“It’s going to be very special to come to St Andrews for the 150th Open as defending champion and it will be a real honour to play alongside legends of our game in the R&A Celebration of Champions,” said Morikawa. 

Watson added: “The Open has provided me with so many cherished moments throughout my life and so I feel privileged to be joining a great number of champions at St Andrews later this year to celebrate this historic occasion for golf.” 

The R&A has also announced a light show which will be beamed onto the clubhouse in late March ahead of the beginning of the major season. It will be free for members and the public to attend as the club marks another step in the countdown to this year’s historic tournament. 

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Meanwhile, starting today, the R&A has joined forces with official tournament partner Rolex to produce exclusive content which will be available on its website. The series will focus on historic moments and figures from the Open’s history and will continue over the coming months. 

Also later this month, the official ticket resale platform will open, meaning those who were successful in the original ticket ballot but can no longer attend will be able to sell their briefs on, and giving those who were unsuccessful the chance to attend.

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