July 3 2013
Nick Faldo last played the British Open in 2010 at St. Andrews. (Getty Images/Redington)
By Sean Martin, PGATOUR.COM
Nick Faldo thought he may have played his final British Open three years ago at St. Andrews. The Home of Golf would be an appropriate place for the three-time champion to make his last appearance at golf’s oldest championship.
Faldo began to consider entering this year’s British Open at Muirfield, though, after filming a commercial at the Scottish course. He won twice at Muirfield, in 1987 and 1992. “I realized how important Muirfield is to me,” Faldo said. “For years I thought my last event was at St. Andrews. Then I thought, 'Hey, I might regret this, this is the last chance to walk Muirfield.' To win two majors, to win two Opens at the 18th hole, that 18th green is a very special spot in my career. I thought, 'Hey, I should go back and give it a go.' ”
British Open champions are exempt for the championship until turning 60. Faldo will turn 56 on the first round of this year’s championship. He last made the cut in 2005, finishing 11th.
Faldo said his preparation has been “a little thin” as he also serves as a television analyst. The 2010 British Open also was his most recent start on either the PGA TOUR or Champions Tour. He recently visited with noted sports psychologist Gio Valiante, who also works with U.S. Open champion Justin Rose, to prepare for the tournament. While competing in a major after such a long layoff is no easy task, Faldo is prepared in at least one aspect.
“I have corduroy trousers, cashmere sweaters and a vest, so I’m ready for Scotland,” he joked.