Motorsport

British Open is the acme in golf, says Thomson

Five-time British Open champion and one of the founding members of the Indian Open, Peter Thomson said that the Olympics gold medal should not be treated as the most prestigious title in golf.

Thomson was not too excited about golf returning to the Olympics fold in 2016. “I am happy. But I don't think it should be higher than the Open. The British Open will remain the highest championship in golf,” said Thomson, the three-time Indian Open winner, at the Bharat Ram centenary celebrations at the Delhi Golf Club premises here on Wednesday.

The 85-year-old Australian said it would not be easy to select golfers who would participate in the Olympics. “It is more useful for the countries which up to now have been sympathetic for golf. It will stimulate (the sport) in such places...We will wait and see the outcome.”

Special moments

India had a special place for Thomson, who was thrilled to be back at the DGC with his wife Mary and a miniature replica of the Indian Open trophy won in 1976. “India was before Asia. In 1776 golfers played at Dum Dum in Kolkata. But it did not happen everywhere.

“India is lagging behind a little bit. The other nations that have surged are Korea and Japan (even though not so much). We have to face up to the fact that golf is associated with the affluent because wherever the nations have become more affluent there is more golf. That is a very healthy thing and ecologically sound as well.”

Thomson said he was not aware of the present day golfers from India.

Thomson, who treated his Open titles equally as “five children,” said current world number one pro Rory Mcllroy could go a long way if he stayed away from injuries.

“If he carefully manages his number of hits, he will live a long time in golf.”

The Aussie had his doubts whether Tiger Woods (14 majors) would be able to go past Jack Nicklaus’s record of 18.

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Printable version | Mar 5, 2021 9:44:14 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/motorsport/British-Open-is-the-acme-in-golf-says-Thomson/article11071367.ece

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