2013 Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open Preview: Leaderboard
DEFENDING British Open champion Ernie Els is hoping to maintain his excellent recent form at the 2013 Scottish Open this week as he prepares to defend his Open title.
The big South African played at the Scottish Open venue, Castle Stuart Golf Links, 12 months ago before lifting the Claret Jug at Royal Lytham & St Annes, and hopes to repeat the trick this year after some impressive displays of late.
Since finishing 13th at the Masters Tournament, Els has been sixth at Wentworth, fourth in the US Open Championship and won in Germany on The European Tour.
“It’s always nice to get a bounty of preparation going into an Open Championship,” said Els, a two-time winner of this event when it was held at Loch Lomond. “I’ve always loved playing The Scottish Open.
The 43 year old said he at first hadn’t planned to play in Scotland before the Open at Muirfield next week but I always had in the back of my mind that it is tough to go into a Major with a three week break. I think I might have done it in the past but I feel a little awkward doing that.”
Also in the event is five-time major winner Phil Mickelson, still trying to master British links golf after 20 years of trying.
“I think it would be one of my greatest accomplishments to be able to conquer links golf and to win an Open Championship over here. Although I’ve come close maybe twice (he was third in 2004 and second in 2011), I have not really played my best golf,” Mickelson said.
“I think I’ve identified a couple of reasons why but it’s time to play now. It’s time to shoot the scores and hit the shots that I’ve spent 20 years working on.”
Aussies in the field include Marcus Fraser, who is also in the British Open field, while Richard Green and Andrew Dodt would need to win this week to qualify.
2013 Scottish Open TV Times
Coverage in Australia on Fox Sports.
1st Round: Friday 12am – 3.30am. 2nd Round: Friday 11pm – 3.30am. 3rd Round: Sunday 12am – 3.30am. Final Round: Monday 12am – 4.30am. (Check local guides).
2013 Scottish Open Leaderboard2013 Scottish Open Leaderboard