Woods on reconnaissance at Hoylake

 

Tiger Woods has no intention of spending as much time as Phil Mickelson at Hoylake in advance of the Open championship start on Thursday, but he was back on the course at 6.45am today.

The world number one and defending champion played the Royal Liverpool course for the first time on Saturday and was back for another look in the company of Australian Rod Pampling.

Mickelson, who but for double-bogeying the final hole of the US Open last month would have been going for a clean sweep of the majors, flew to Britain three weeks ago and spent a reported nine hours on the links then.

And he returned at the end of last week to continue his preparations for an event in which he has had just one top 10 finish - third at Troon two years ago - in 13 attempts.

Hoylake has not staged the Open since 1967, when Argentina's Roberto de Vicenzo beat Jack Nicklaus by two shots.

It had been hoped that De Vicenzo would be present this week to see his successor crowned, but he has now decided not to make the trip.

Australian Peter Thomson, who won his third successive title there in 1956, is expected to be present 50 years on, though.