Open record: 42-47-3-25-60-MC-1-5-4-2-MC-46
The Northern Irishman told the BBC in May that he was wrapping himself in cotton wool to ensure that he actually tees it up in "an extra special" Open, a reference to the football kickabout injury he picked up ahead of the 2015 championship. He'd finished top 10 in six of the seven majors before missing that week, winning two of them. Was that disruption the key moment in the major drought that rumbles on? All conjecture, of course, but this week would be the ideal time and place to end it. The location is especially key because beyond St Andrews and Hoylake he has an average links record.
Open record: 59-44-MC-11-3
The Spaniard's only major triumph was inspired by a location close to his heart and he's said of this week: "I can't tell you how many times I've seen the images of Seve celebrating his winning putt here." More fuel for the fire in his belly? His first three Open starts failed to reap a top 40, but he was T11th at Royal Portrush and tied third last year at Royal St. George's. The latter was also the first Open in which he didn't sign for at least one score of 74+. He was a winner in Mexico in May, but on the links it has to be a concern that throughout 2022 his short game, both on and around the green, has held him back.
Open record: 8
A complete linksland novice ahead of last summer, the Masters champion explained that, "Everyone told me you have to play the ball along the ground and I thought they were making it up, but it came naturally to me." It didn't seem so when he was T113th after 18 holes of last year's Scottish Open, but a second round 63 vaulted him towards an eventual finish of T12th and he was tied eighth a week later in his Open bow. He started this year's trip by playing Ballybunion and Lahinch last week, before a missed cut in the Scottish Open, and he also struggled in the JP McManus Pro-Am in-between.
Open record: 44-36-4-30-1-9-20-2
Seven years ago the Texan arrived in St Andrews halfway to a Grand Slam for the year and he ended the week just one shot shy of the play-off. "Here and Augusta National are my two favourite places in the world," he'd said.
What he likes about those two layouts (and pretty much all links golf, as evidenced by the win at Royal Birkdale and second last year in Sandwich) is the creativity he can use on and around the greens. It fires his brain and generates his finest golf. He's in good form by the sea this year, with second at Pebble Beach, victory at Harbour Town and T10th last week at Renaissance.
Open record: 44-MC-44-MC-20-26
This week will be a very special one for the new US Open champion, but will include many new challenges including all sorts of clamour everywhere he goes from fans, sponsors and the media. He also has a mixed history with the Old Course, saying recently: "I won the St Andrews Junior Open when it was literally sideways rain and an absolute gale. But I wouldn't necessarily say the course is one of my favourites to play." He's missed three of five cuts at the Dunhill Links and has no top 10. His ordinary Open record is part explained by no top 30 rank for either Greens in Regulation or Putting Average.
Open record: 20-2-41-26
A missed cut in the Masters was a rare weekend off in the majors for a man who has 14 top 25s in 21 starts in the big ones. Moreover, scores of 76-77 were really poor for him. He promptly replaced his wedges and the results have been profound: victory in the Zurich Classic alongside Patrick Cantlay, a 61 in the AT&T Byron Nelson and wins in the Travelers Championship, JP McManus Pro-Am and last week's Scottish Open. He said last year of links golf: "I don't know if it's the European blood in me but I do enjoy it here. I like thinking my way round the property differently to home."
Open record: 53-MC-MC-11-40
Nine years ago May's PGA Championship winner made his professional debut at the Dunhill Links Championship in St Andrews. He started well, making an eagle-2 at the first in practice on the Old Course and carding a first round 66. But he missed the cut and admits, "for as much as I love links golf and the Open I have not played it very well in my career." Incredibly, in his first three Open starts, he was top 10 after 18 holes every time but carded two 77s and an 80 in round two. He's more solid now but his seaside woes returned last week when missing the cut in the Scottish Open.
Open record: 37-32-9-MC-MC-MC-MC-1-12
After landing third place in the JP McManus Pro-Am last week - a 13th top 20 in 16 starts this year - he said of this week: "I'm pretty confident. I'll play some links golf here in Ireland, at Portmarnock and maybe take a trip to Baltray. I've some good memories there (it was the scene of his Irish Open win as an amateur)."
He's on record as saying that the Old Course is a favourite of his and he has seven top 25 finishes in his last eight Dunhill Links appearances including tied fourth last October. He also has seven straight sub-70 scores in the final round on the Old Course.
Open record: MC-78-20-33
For a man with a generally excellent game around the green, the Aussie has struggled badly in the Open. In fact, in his four starts he averages less than 50% for Scrambling. He was tied fifth at halfway at Royal Portrush in 2019 and tied ninth after 54 holes in Sandwich last year, but then another problem emerges: his final round record is currently dreadful. It is, at least, heading in the right direction: a 77 at Carnoustie, a 76 at Royal Portrush, and a 74 at Royal St. George's. He was a double winner early in the year and last week's T10th in the Scottish Open was a top 10 since a near miss in the Masters.
Open record: WD
Since he graduated to the PGA Tour in late 2020 the 25-year-old has been little short of outstanding in the majors, claiming tied sixth in that year's US Open, an audacious second on his Masters debut, tied eighth in the PGA Championship, tied sixth in this year's Masters, play-off defeat in May's PGA Championship and tied second in the US Open. The only downer was a forced withdrawal from the Open last year, when he injured himself hacking from rough. Intriguingly, he says of links golf: "It's similar to Texas in winter: very dry and you've got to keep it on the ground and underneath the wind."
Open record: 1
Ahead of last year's championship the American admitted, following his linksland debut T71st the week before in the Scottish Open: "It's a learning curve, but I enjoy it and I love being creative. It fits my game." That learning curve turned out to be steep. Very steep, in fact, because he carded 67-64 to get in the mix and 68-66 to convert the win at the weekend. Claiming triumph in an Open debut is rare, so is winning two majors within two years of turning pro, and Morikawa also has two top fives in the majors this year. He's very good but he missed the cut last week in the Scottish.
Open record: MC-14-2-9-32-12-49-9-54-MC-51-8
Seven years ago the home of golf was abuzz with the idea that Johnson would win the Open. He'd finished T14th on the course in 2010 and had contended in three of the following four championships. When he opened 65-69 for the halfway lead the chatter looked on the button and the name Johnson was eventually scratched on the Claret Jug. But Dustin carded two 75s at the weekend for T49th and instead Zach won the prize. Newly signed up to LIV, he has plenty of distractions, but did finish fourth in the Portland event, and his big hitting and good wedge game is a great fit for the test.
Open record: 12-41-MC
There was bad and good news in the Californian's missed cut at Royal St. George's. It was his first lost weekend at the Open, but his second round 69 was also his first sub-70 lap in the championship at the 10th attempt. That said, seven of his first eight rounds were either 70s or 71s so his problem is finding a spark rather than being greatly troubled by this form of the game. It is a similar situation with his form. Eight times this season he has been top four at the end of a round or during a final round, but the only win came when he paired up with Xander Schauffele in the Zurich Classic. He closed with 69-67 last week at the Renaissance.
Open record: MC-MC-MC-1-54-19-36-2-MC-MC-28-20-3
A modern master of The Old Course, who defied the three missed cuts with which he opened his championship account to win by seven shots on the Old Course in 2010 and then made the play-off five years later, missing out to Zach Johnson. Last year he nearly added his name to the Claret Jug again, leading through the first 54 holes at Royal St. George's before finishing tied third. His form after that near miss regressed right through to May, but he's landed three top 10s in his last four starts, two of them in LIV Golf events. He's best placed rebel to cause a rumpus.
Open record: MC-MC-MC-MC-5-MC-51-6-MC
The Englishman has quite a relationship with the Old Course. "My first ever Open was there in 2010 when I was just 18 so it will be special to be back there with a bit more experience in the locker," he said last week.
Since then, he's played plenty of fine links golf in Ireland and Scotland, he's landed two top sixes in the Open, and he's proved himself a superb performer in the Dunhill Links, winning back-to-back in 2016 and 2017, then adding runner-up finishes in 2018 and last October. He broke a run of bad form with T24th last week at the Scottish Open.
Open record: MC-67-10-6-39-4-6
The four-time major championship winner remains an on-going mystery. The giddy days of those early triumphs, when he seemed rather tickled that he was overlooked by the media and opponents, has become truculence that the radar was missing him, a falling out with DJ, antipathy towards Bryson and rancour about LIV Golf. He's recently married, but cuts a pretty miserable figure on and around the golf course. His LIV bow earlier this month was his first start, other than the majors, this summer and eight of his 13 laps in that stretch have needed 73 blows or more.
Open record: 6-39-18-MC-14-MC-MC
Ahead of the Masters in April there were concerns that the Japanese star's neck injury would prevent him defending the Green Jacket. But he put up a good show, sharing second at halfway before finishing T14th. He added third at the AT&T Byron Nelson, made the cut in the PGA Championship and was tied fourth in the US Open. But, until he missed the cut in last week's Scottish Open, that's been his lot this summer. A riddle then: limited starts, but not bad when he does play. He does have four top 20s from his 10 linksland start, but tied sixth on debut at Muirfield in the 2013 Open remains his best and he's now missed four seaside cuts on the bounce.
Open record: 76
The Kentucky man is an increasingly impressive competitor at the highest level and his linksland record has some promise. On debut in last year's Scottish Open he was T113th after an opening 72, but raced home to record T18th and a week later he used that learning experience to make the weekend at the Open. This year he joined Jordan Spieth and Scottie Scheffler on a jaunt to Lahinch then collected second at the JP McManus Pro-Am before finishing making another cut at the Scottish Open. T20th in May PGA Championship is his best major effort so far but he's on the rise.
Open record: MC-MC-MC-27-12-2-33
The Englishman loves the venue, tweeting last October: "No better place on earth to soothe your golfing soul than St Andrews. My love for the Old Course continues to grow!"
He has a brilliant Dunhill Links record with nine top 25s, six of them tied seventh or better, in 10 starts. And his final round average on the Old Course? 67.70. Back in 2015 this suitability for this test was widely flagged and it played with his head. This year he is more experienced. Can he atone for the disappointment of finishing second three years ago at Royal Portrush? A promising tied fourth last week at Renaissance.
Open record: MC-59
A fine wire-to-wire winner of the Genesis Invitational at Riviera in February, his year since has been typified by good positions he's not quite made the most of. Six times since then he's been on the shoulders of the leaders, but only once, when tied third at the Memorial, has he registered a top 10. His low ball flight and evident ability to negotiate gusting wind ought to make him a neat fit for link golf, but his brief experience is yet reap any reward. He missed the cut at Royal Portrush and was T59th last year at Royal St. George's, neither finding many greens or making many putts.
Open record: 4-MC-30-22-MC-12-70-13-MC-44-MC-MC-23-6-22-54-2-20-46
The Englishman likes the location. "To be honest, I always play the Old Course pretty well," he said ahead of tied sixth in 2015. "I won the St. Andrews Links Trophy, I've done well in the Dunhill Links, and my one Open here? I missed the cut on the number from the wrong side of the draw." Maybe some hidden form, then, but it's an oddity that a fellow who introduced himself to the world at the Open as a teenager has added only two top fives as a professional. He was T13th in the PGA Championship, tied fourth in the Canadian Open and made the cut in last week's Scottish Open.
Open record: 6-8
"The Open Championship at the Home of Golf - it's going to be the biggest golf tournament I've ever played in my life," the Oban man said last week. For some you sense the sentiment might overawe as much as inspire, but maybe not MacIntyre. An actual win might be a tall order - the pre-final round pressure would be enormous - but he could easily ride the wave and have a solid week. He first hinted at his links pedigree when a runner-up at Hillside in the British Masters and has looked accomplished in his brief experiences at the Open. Missed the cut last week however.
Open record: 68-22-24-3-17-1-25-28-4-9-1-1-12-MC-23-3-6-69-MC-6-MC
Let's keep it simple: peak Tiger Woods triumphed twice on the Old Course, a layout that suited him perfectly. He is clearly very far from being at his best right now and there are whispers that his appearance this week might even be a farewell to tour golf. He said at the JP McManus Pro-Am last week: "It's a pretty historic Open we're going to be playing. I want to play there again and I don't know if they are ever going to be back there while I'm still able to play at a high level. I want to give it at least one more run at a high level." A special week but just playing four rounds might be a win.
Open record: 18-27-9-3-15
An Open debut on the Old Course for the big man, but he did play the Dunhill Links in 2018 and 2019, finishing T10th on both occasions, so he has experience of the test. He also has a fine Open record, never failing to make the top 30. Could this be the week for him to rediscover his knack of landing major championship top 10s? From April 2018 to May last year he tallied nine of them in 13 appearances, but has now gone five starts without one. He's ranked in the top three for Greens in Regulation in the last three Opens (but was twice outside the top 75 for Scrambling).
Open record: 12
Ahead of his Open debut 12 months ago the Norwegian said, of the threat posed by the British seaside: "I live in Oklahoma and it blows like every single day. Moving the ball down is not an issue." Moreover, his three PGA Tour victories, plus the unofficial win in the Hero Challenge, have all come by ocean, albeit in tropical climates. That first start reaped T12th at Royal St George's but it is his best major effort in 11 tries and this year he has regressed (T27th at the Masters, T41st in the PGA Championship, missed cut in the US Open) and has no top 20 since THE PLAYERS Championship in March.
Open record: MC-47-MC-MC-42-34-8-27-16-MC-27-25-2-3-5-10-43-22-17-MC-46
After ending his week at Royal St. George's with T46th the big Aussie was bullish about how he would attack the major championships of 2022. He hadn't landed one top 30 in the 2021 editions and was really quite down on himself. T49th at the Masters and a missed cut at the PGA Championship were not what he had in mind, nor was a never-in-contention T14th at the US Open. But the latter effort does offer some hope. He had an Open sweet spot between 2012 and 2015, ending 12 of 16 rounds inside the top 10. Since then he is 0-for-18 at achieving the same feat.
Open record: MC-51-MC-33
He made headlines at last year's Open by declaring that his driver "sucks", an assessment that understandably didn't go down well with his manufacturer Cobra. He did end the week with a 65 and said: "I'll learn a lot from this going into next year, but it's going to take time to learn the whole ins and outs of Open golf." It was his first sub-70 score on the linksland (at the 12th attempt) and if ever a course was vulnerable to big-hitting and audacious lines of attack it would be the Old Course on a benign day but his T10th at the LIV Portland event was only a second top 50 of 2022.
Open record: 30-34-39-58-12-70-67-MC-MC
The 2019 US Open champion carded a wonderful 64 in the first round of the Scottish Open last week on his way to a top 30, a confidence builder to add to his T10th in the US Open last month. His Open record is solid enough, albeit with almost no highlights whatsoever. He's played 32 rounds and only once has he ended one inside the top 10, when tied sixth at halfway in 2016 at Troon. He also made the cut in each of his first seven appearances but has missed the weekend in the two starts since he became a major champion.
Open record: 51-MC
The Aussie has always played very good golf in the wind and by the sea. He proved that with his first wins on the two main tours: at a gusting Dubai Desert Classic in 2020 and then a blustery Bermuda Championship last year. He's also finished tied seventh at the Dunhill Links and is a two-time top four finisher in the Scottish Open at the Renaissance Club. He logged a major career-best T13th in May's PGA Championship and added tied ninth on defence of his Irish Open earlier this month before missing the cut last week in the Scottish Open with differing rounds of 69-75.
Open record: 60-MC-MC-5-2-53-6-60-MC-MC
If the rain stays away the Aussie will be happy because he loves a fast-running, blustery test, always referencing, when he comes across one, that it reminds him of home.
Top six finishes at Hoylake and Royal Birkdale came courtesy of final round 65s, and he closed 64-66 to make the extra holes at the 2015 Open. He was a promising T14th in the US Open but missed the cut last week in Scotland.
Open record: 40
The popular Tweeter was never close to the top of the leaderboard than T40th on debut last year, but he also never needed more than 71 blows to cover the course. He scrambled very well, but didn't hit a lot of greens and didn't hole many putts when he did. Having missed the cut in seven of his first eight major starts he's now made four in a row. He has the game to land a first major top 10 and confidence should be growing.
Open record: Debut
The Chilean's solid spring form almost culminated in a dramatic victory at the PGA Championship before a double bogey at the 72nd hole lost him both the win and a spot in the play-off. He maintained the run for a few weeks before a few bad rounds crept in and the pattern was repeated on his Scottish seaside debut last week at the Renaissance Club when he followed a superb 66 with a weekend-busting 81.
Open record: 49-MC-39-16-67
The Kiwi is undoubtedly in hot form with seven top 10s (five of them top threes including a victory in February) from his last 11 starts. In that run he's faced up to PGA Tour opposition just three times and on every single occasion finished outside the top 40, including last week in Scotland. There is links form in his record book, however, taking in top sixes at Gullane, Ballyliffin, Dundonald Links and Portstewart.
Open record: MC
It was a tough first experience by the British and Irish seaside for the Korean, when he shot 71-80 at Royal Portrush in 2019. The gusting wind and rain on that Friday truly caught him out because he'd made his six previous cuts and would make his next 16 as well. Since then he's landed two top 10s in the Masters but rounds of 75-72 to miss last weekend in the Scottish Open suggests that links golf still baffles him.
Open record: MC-MC-59
The Mexican has shown little in his three starts in the Open, missing cuts at Carnoustie and Royal Portrush before posting T59th last year at Royal St. George's. In that trio of results he's hit lots of green (7 in every 10) but has a Putt Average of 1.90 and has needed 31.75 putts per round. His only other foray to the links earned T19th at Lahinch when he was third at halfway so more might be in the locker.
Open record: MC-MC-30-MC-MC-MC-53
Last week the American admitted that he's struggled with major preparation and added: "Unfortunately I've become somewhat of a mental midget on Thursday." The raw facts are damning: 35 majors played and just one top 10. And his observation is also spot on: he's broken 72 just 10 times in those 35 first rounds. The ray of hope? His only top 50 in the Open came in his only appearance on the Old Course in 2015.
Open record: MC-15
Has the Canadian's major championship bubble burst? Because his three Masters top 10s in a row (from 2020), plus 2020 PGA Championship and Open top 20s (first round leader in the former, contender in the second) have been followed by missed cuts in this year's PGA Championship and US Open. A serene performer from tee to green, his brief Open career has been stymied by scrambling at less than 50%.
Open record: 18-5-MC-29-20-37-5-22-MC-MC-1-1-65-MC-MC-39-54-MC-20-36-MC-MC-MC-72
The Irishman is a two-time Open champ, a two-time Dunhill Links winner and last month he claimed the US Senior Open. Can he win another major? "100%, Phil did it," he said last week. "Tom Watson proved that it's possible and it's even more of a chance on links and at St Andrews. I don't have a barrier of 50 years of age. Coming down the stretch in a major everybody else is going to feel the same way as I do."
Open record: MC-20-12-MC-28-10-MC
The controversial American got his LIV Golf career off to a flying start with third in the recent Portland event, a first top five finish since the Bermuda Championship last autumn when he flew home on a wet sail in gusting conditions to card a 65. His Open returns have been hit or miss, with four top 30s and three missed cuts, but even the former has a best of T10th. LIV questions will persist if he contends.
Open record: Debut
It's very easy to admire the way the Irishman has ridden the wave the last 12 months. He started last year's Open week as a journeyman who'd finally landed a few PGA Tour top 10s, he ended it the Barbasol Championship winner and the feel good tale has trundled on. This week completes a solid Grand Slam of major debuts for 2022: T27th in the Masters, tied ninth in the PGA Championship, T12th in the US Open.
Open record: Debut
It's been some season for the PGA Tour rookie, taking in three second places and a pair of thirds with the last of them coming in May's PGA Championship. He also put on a show when missing the cut in the US Open. Through 27 holes he was 3-over, the number that made the cut. But he played his next four holes in six-over whereupon he played the next four in five-under (including a hole-in-one). A par at his 18th left him one blow shy of making the weekend. A linksland rookie ahead of last week's Scottish Open he missed the cut with rounds of 76 and 77.
Harold Varner III
Open record: 66-MC
You'd think that the cheerful American must improve on his previous efforts at the Open. After all, on debut in 2016 at Troon, he finished T66th and only two men who made the cut had worse putting figures than him. Last year he missed the cut when scrambling around Sandwich at 30.8%. Furthermore, he's never been in better form. He won the Saudi International in February and has made nine of his last 10 cuts.
Open record: 34-15-19-MC-18-79-MC-MC
Quietly, the former PGA Championship winner was third and three shots back of the lead in the 2016 Open at Troon. But when Henrik Stenson and Phil Mickelson went one way at the weekend he went the other, which is rather typical of his Open returns. He's landed four top 10s this summer, but missed the cut last week and look away now: he scrambled at 14% on the Old Course in 2015 and needed 34.50 putts per round.
Open record: MC-MC
It's hard to gauge the American's Open record. Ultimately he's missed the cut in both visits, however he's always mixed good golf with terrible golf in shooting 75-69 at Royal Portrush and 68-76 last year at Royal St. George's. Sneakily he has decent Old Course experience because his sister was at college in St Andrews and his dad is an R&A member. After a pair of top 10s in the Canadian Open and Travelers Championship he carded a final round 66 last week at the Renaissance.
Open record: MC-MC-20-MC-71-27-7-47-3-54-MC-47-74-MC-11-51-57-15
Injury has wrecked his season and it must hurt because he'd been enjoying an Indian Summer in the majors with six top 30s on the bounce from the end of lockdown, including three top 10s. He said in 2015, of his tied third in 2010 at the Old Course: "It's a course I love and it was a treat to be in the final group." He hasn't played since March and made the cheesiest of entries to LIV Golf earlier this month which won't be missed this week.
Open record: MC-29-MC-36-9-8-10-MC-5-5-2-51-38-14-9-MC-21-2-6-5-37-MC-67-19
Another golfer for whom contending will mean discussing LIV - and it's hard to foresee how the Spaniard wouldn't be rattled by such questions. His finest golf is unquestionably a good fit for the links and the galleries like him, but there is a brutal reality about Garcia post-2017 Masters triumph: he's played 22 majors, made no top 10 and missed the cut 13 times. He's better than that but it's hard to see it changing this week.
Open record: 30-44-28-67
The Belgian has never ended an Open round inside the top 10, but he has also never missed a cut in his four appearances. His best performance on a links course was when tied sixth in the 2018 Scottish Open at Gullane, but he did win in Abu Dhabi at Yas Links this January and, for what it's worth, winners of Desert Swing events do have a handy Open record. Moreover, none have been victorious on such an apt layout.
Open record: MC
There's no getting away from the fact that the Frenchman is facing an uphill battle based on major championship performances alone. He missed the cut in his Open debut last year and he's failed to last the weekend in his last half dozen majors. On the other hand he's twice finished fourth at World Golf Championship level, he practices in St Andrews, won the Dunhill Links there in 2019 and is a winner this summer.
Open record: Debut
The 6'6" bean-Pole has been ticking off the achievements: first Pole to win on the Challenge Tour, first Pole to make the main tour, first Pole to win there (earlier this month at the Irish Open) and now Poland's first major championship starter. He has no form on the links as a pro but did lead the 2013 Amateur Championship strokeplay at Royal Cinque Ports and made the last four at Royal Porthcawl in 2016.
Open record: MC-15-MC-6-53-76-24-6-33
Do not overlook the importance of the 2015 Open in the Englishman's success at the following year's Masters. He'd played with Zach Johnson in the final round and immediately said: "I can look back and see how he won it." It was a lesson he didn't forget. In addition to his tied sixth at Royal Portrush in 2019, he was top 10 after 18 holes at both Carnoustie and Royal St. George's. He is also the reigning Dunhill Links champion.