“Torture”, declared Sandy Lyle, the 1985 champion, after slumping to an 85, which equalled his worst score in the event, to sit last of the 156 players after day one at Royal Troon.
His calamitous card contained a triple-bogey 7 at the 11th. “The result of a 3-iron second shot straight on to the railway,” he revealed afterwards. Also on there was a double-bogey and 10 bogeys.
“It was bad golf from start to finish – just one of those yucky days,” added the 58-year-old, with a shrug of the shoulders, after marking his 41st appearance in the event by matching an effort from Carnoustie in 1999.
Paul Lawrie, the winner on that occasion, signed for a 72, two better than Brandt Snedeker, one of his playing partners and the man he beat in the Ryder Cup singles at Medinah four years ago. “Tee to green was good but I struggled with the putter again,” said Lawrie. “I gave myself a lot of chances but couldn’t convert them. One over was the most I could have been by a couple of shots.”
Given that he’d been unable to play a practice round due to being unwell earlier in the week, Richie Ramsay wasn’t too disheartened with a 73. “At one point on Tuesday, I was lying in bed and thinking, ‘I’m not sure if I’m going to play’. I just was throwing up all the time,” he revealed.
Like Lyle, Marc Warren had a day to forget as he had to settle for a 77, the bulk of the damage being caused on the back nine and, in particular, the closing four holes, which cost him four shots.