Tiger Woods would be well-advised to add the Scottish Open to his schedule next season. That’s the opinion of Ronnie Macaskill, secretary of the host club, Royal Aberdeen.
Woods hasn’t played in the tournament since 1996, when he teed it up at Carnoustie as an amateur. That’s despite repeated attempts to get him to play at Loch Lomond and then more recently at Castle Stuart.
As yet, there has been no word from the world No.1’s camp as to what his schedule for next year will be. However, with many of the game’s top players committing to play in the Scottish Open at Royal Aberdeen next year – Rory McIlroy and Phil Mickelson are ‘definites’, with Graeme McDowell and Justin Rose also expected to appear – there is a genuine hope that Tiger Woods might join them in the North East.
Macaskill is coy on the chances of luring the 14-time major winner to his club but reckons that he would be doing himself a massive favour if he did turn up.
“It would be fantastic if Tiger Woods played here. It would be a surprise, but fantastic all the same,” said Macaskill.
“If you look at the facts, the last three Open champions have all warmed-up at the Scottish Open the week before: Darren Clarke did it 2011, Ernie Els in 2012, and of course Phil Mickelson won at Castle Stuart this year before winning at Muirfield the following week. So, you can’t deny that a competitive links tune-up does the trick.
"If Tiger Woods was looking at it purely from a golfing point of view, I think he’d find a reason to play here.”
“If I was Tiger, and if was desperately trying to get back to winning ways in the majors, I’d be looking at that and thinking seriously about it.
“Plus, from here, the players will go to Hoylake, where Tiger Woods won the last time the Open was played there in 2006. Our Balgownie Links is quite similar in a lot of ways to Hoylake, so it would be the perfect place to prepare. I think it would be the best thing he could do.
“Don’t get me wrong, I know players these days have their own agendas and different priorities. But if Tiger Woods was looking at it purely from a golfing point of view, I think he’d find a reason to play here.”
The 2014 Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open at Royal Aberdeen will be the first-ever European Tour event to be held in the Granite City and will take place from July 10-13.
Tiger Woods & the Scottish Open
Tiger Woods has only ever played in the Scottish Open – both times before he turned professional. He made his debut at Carnoustie in 1995, posting rounds of 69, 71, 75 and 78 to finish in a tie for 47th. He then returned to the Angus links a year later but missed the cut after rounds of 81 and 75. A month later, he turned professional. His only subsequent competitive appearances in Scotland have come in the Open Championship (ten times) and the Alfred Dunhill Cup (in 1998).