Quigley opts for Milwaukee
Brett Quigley had the best 36-hole score Sunday at the John Deere Classic, 62-67 in the marathon finish to tie for second at Silvis, Ill. It came with a perk that Quigley wasn’t expecting—a spot in the British Open.
He loves links golf and the British Open. He also had a pro-am obligation Monday, and his family was heading to Milwaukee to attend the memorial service for Chris Smith, whose wife was killed in a car accident in Indiana last month.
Quigley never thought he would have a chance at Turnberry, so he didn’t bring his passport with him to Illinois. To go home to Florida to retrieve it would mean arriving at the British Open today, getting his legs under him Wednesday, then teeing off Thursday.
Quigley had five minutes to figure out what to do, and decided to stay put.
“My heart is not into playing the British,” he said. “I know I’ll catch some heat for it. But I know it’s the right decision for me.”
Quigley is not the first American to skip golf’s oldest major. Kenny Perry sat out last year, even though he was eligible two weeks in advance, because he had committed to play Milwaukee in his quest to make the Ryder Cup team. Fred Funk also had designs on the Ryder Cup in 2004 when he skipped Royal Troon in favor of Milwaukee.
In a text message Monday morning, Quigley said felt better about his decision, especially the service for Beth Smith.
“I cannot even begin to fathom his pain,” Quigley said. “I hope he feels the love from his tour family and everyone else. Family and friends are vital in these times.”
Tiger Woods is used to having a lot of photographers follow him in majors. The number is about to go up.
Woods will play the first two rounds of the British Open at Turnberry, Scotland, with Ryo Ishikawa, a 17-year-old from Japan who has a massive following. They have never played with each other, although they met at the Accenture Match Play Championship in Arizona this year, where the Japanese sensation was an alternate. Some four dozen photographers captured the occasion.
Joining them will be Lee Westwood.