Friday, December 19, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

McIlroy rekindles love for links at Scottish Open

Britain Golf Scottish Open

Rory McIlroy tees off at the 5th during day one of the Scottish Open at Royal Aberdeen golf course, Aberdeen Scotland Thursday July 10, 2014. (AP Photo/Kenny Smith/PA) UNITED KINGDOM OUT NO SALES NO ARCHIVE

By
From page B8 | July 11, 2014 |

ABERDEEN, Scotland — Three years after virtually giving up on links golf, a more mature Rory McIlroy appears ready to give it another chance.

McIlroy tamed blustery conditions on day one of the Scottish Open to shoot a 7-under 64 on Thursday, giving him a one-stroke lead and showing his links game is in great shape ahead of next week’s British Open at Hoylake.

“I feel I am as prepared as I have ever been to play this type of golf,” a smiling McIlroy said after rolling in eight birdies — six of which came in a stunning seven-hole spell from Nos. 8-14 at Royal Aberdeen.

How things have changed from 2011.

At a wet and wild British Open at Royal St. George’s that year, a frustrated McIlroy opened his heart, saying he wasn’t a fan of tournaments where the “outcome is predicted so much by the weather” and that “there’s no point in changing your game for one week a year.”

Coming from someone who grew up playing on the links in his native Northern Ireland, it was a strange outburst. That seems to be in the past now.

“I’m going to make it my favorite style for two weeks a year,” said McIlroy, adding he was “relishing the challenge” of playing in the wind and rain.

Unheralded Swede Kristoffer Broberg — who went out in the first group at 6:30 a.m. local time — and Ricardo Gonzalez of Argentina shot 65s to lie one shot behind McIlroy.

Michael Hoey, a compatriot of McIlroy, was a stroke further back after a 5-under 66, and former world No. 1 Luke Donald was among four players to shoot 67. Phil Mickelson missed a 3-foot par putt at the final hole for his only bogey in a 68, a solid start by the American to the defense of his title.

McIlroy’s course-record round stood out, though. Refreshed after a two-week break that included a five-day trip to the Spanish island of Ibiza with friends, the two-time major winner looked back to his sharpest.

He showed a good feel on the greens, especially in that barrage of birdies around the turn, and drove straight and long in the face of winds of up to 20 mph (30 kph). One of the highlights of his round was driving the green on the 436-yard 13th hole while the group ahead was on the putting surface.

“I didn’t really think that was out there,” American golfer Rickie Fowler said of McIlroy’s score.

Ominously for his British Open rivals, McIlroy said he felt completely at one with his game, the “polar opposite” to this time last year when he was “not very confident with anything.”

“Everything was pretty much on,” he said. “In the conditions, this is as low as I have ever been.”

McIlroy has had problems backing up good opening rounds this season, so there is still hope for the rest of the field in northern Scotland.

Up at 4 a.m. local time, Broberg showed the kind of form that won him four events on the second-tier Challenge Tour in 2012, earned him his tour card, and marked him as a star of the future.

Five of his six birdies came from Nos. 6-12 and Broberg had just 24 putts in his round, putting him in contention to claim one of the four qualifying berths for the British Open that are available at Royal Aberdeen for non-exempt players finishing in the top 10.

Gonzalez made light work of a front nine playing into the wind, and was 8 under par after an eagle 3 at No. 12. Two bogeys at the end saw him drop off the lead.

Mickelson’s round was typically eventful. A chip to 10 feet from a cart path at No. 13 was his shot of the day, while the British Open champion avoided a penalty on the 10th when his ball moved on his backswing for his second shot. A sharp gust of wind was to blame.

Lee Westwood recovered from dropping five shots in his first five holes to post a 72, and six-time major winner Nick Faldo, playing his first regular European Tour event since 2010, had a 2-over 73 as he gets ready for a return to the British Open.

Tom Lewis made a hole in one on the par-3 No. 17 on his way to a 70.

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
Sondheim’s ‘Woods’ holiday showcase for Missouri Street Theatre

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Groundbreakings, ribbon-cuttings play role in civic life

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Frankye Kelly ready to spread holiday cheer

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Celebrate the magic of Christmas

By Tony Wade | From Page: A2, 2 Comments

 
Santas have busy week at schools

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3, 1 Comment

 
Safe streets task force work nets 3

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3, 4 Comments

 
 
Solano College approves officers, meeting schedule

By Susan Winlow | From Page: A4

Longtime Suisun harbor master to retire

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
 
Fairfield police log: Dec. 17, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Suisun City police log: Dec. 17, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12, 1 Comment

 
.

US / World

Spy’s parents search for son after Cuba-US deal

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Hope and some fear in Cuba amid thaw with US

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Next steps on Cuba: Normalizing could take awhile

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Sony hacking fallout puts all companies on alert

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Sony film took aim at North Korea’s biggest taboo

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 3 Comments

 
Timeline of the Sony Pictures Entertainment hack

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Digital dilemma: How will US respond to Sony hack?

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
 
Local emergencies in Northern California counties after rain

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

California’s top utility regulator defends record

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
‘Pretty horrible’ scene; car slams into crowd

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Police: Drunk man shot while entering wrong house

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 4 Comments

Tsarnaev appears in court for 1st time since 2013

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
President signs legislation ending Nazi benefit checks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

2 states challenge Colorado marijuana legalization

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8, 3 Comments

 
‘Prison Houdini’ set to make his 1st legal escape

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

Top Islamic militants killed; more US troops going to Iraq

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

 
Feds sue NYC over Rikers Island jail violence

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

Russian sailors leaving France without warship

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9, 1 Comment

 
Putin: West wants to defang, declaw Russian bear

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

European court rules obesity can be a disability

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

 
Suspected Islamic extremists kidnap 185 in Nigeria

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13, 2 Comments

.

Opinion

Another look at school bonds

By George Guynn Jr. | From Page: A11, 2 Comments

 
Editorial Cartoon: Dec. 19, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A11

News of the day strikes a chord

By Bud Stevenson | From Page: A11, 10 Comments

 
 
.

Living

Today in History: Dec. 19, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2, 1 Comment

 
Community Calendar: Dec. 19, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Dec. 19, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: D8

 
Should I use Child Protective Services threat to get back rent?

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: D8

.

Entertainment

Week in preview Dec. 19-25, 2014

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Sweet ‘Night at the Museum’ bids farewell to Robin Williams

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Craig Ferguson to end 10 years as host of ‘Late Late Show’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Eric Idle brings ‘Not the Messiah’ to Carnegie Hall

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Entertainment calendar Dec. 19, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: B4

.

Sports

A’s trade All-Star catcher Derek Norris to Padres

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Warriors beat Thunder 114-109 after Durant injury

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
A’s acquire lefty De La Rosa from Arizona for cash

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

Raiders defense depleted by injuries

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
49ers’ Harbaugh mum on reported offer from Michigan

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

49ers’ Aldon Smith hopes to build off tough year

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Column: Thaw in US-Cuba relations warms up MLB

By Jim Litke | From Page: B8

Rivera: Newton ‘probably’ will start vs. Browns

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Bears bench QB Jay Cutler for Clausen

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

‘Hands Up’ players to attend Ferguson Christmas party

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Celtics trade Rondo to Mavericks

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Rodriguez boys open Les Curry Tournament with victory

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B8

 
39 bowl games and a reason to watch every one

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Signups for Friday, Dec. 19, 2014

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B9

 
This date in sports history for Friday, Dec. 19, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11

Sports on TV/Local sports for Friday, Dec. 19, 2014

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B11

 
.

Business

Roomiest Subaru Legacy debuts for 2015

By Ann M. Job | From Page: C1

 
Dow industrials have their best day in three years

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Ford expands drivers air bag recall nationwide

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Constantly changing online prices stump shoppers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

.

Obituaries

Lisa Dee McHughes

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Dominic C. Scolaro

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Ernest “Ernie” Moretti

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Travis Curt Price

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Jennie Ponce Reyes

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Patricia “Pat” Anne Stringfield-Pierre

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics