Royal St. George's Like Playing on the Moon

Royal St. George's Like Playing on the Moon

Set hard along the English Channel and resting below this medieval town, a historic links that sweeps across 400 acres and was bestowed royal status by King Edward VII has stood the test of time and weathered the harshest of elements.

Royal St. George's, named for a patron of saint of England who was executed in 303 for his Christian views, is nestled so far south that golfers standing on the first tee can see France on a cloudless day.

But this week, players in the 140th edition of the Open Championship could end up scratching their heads and wondering if they're in another world.

"I just remember it being very quirky, almost like playing on the surface of the moon," Justin Rose kindly said of Royal St. George's. "It's very much humps and bumps, and you're very much at the mercy of the course in terms of the kicks and bounces you get. That's the great thing about links golf, though — you need to embrace that."

Or forget about a bad carom as quickly as possible. Opened in 1887, the course — which is hosting the Open for the 14th time — has bedeviled golfers of all handicaps with its unsympathetic topography and a nasty assortment of heather, tall grass, rough and pot bunkers.

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