Canadian Open Media Day Roundup

Nathan Greena and Mike Weir speak to the media yesterday at the RBC Canadian Open media day.

Lots of coverage of yesterday’s unveiling of the field yesterday at St. George’s Golf and Country Club.

Toronto Sun writer Dave Fuller played with Nathan Green and found him amiable and great company.

Toronto Star’s Doug Smith, in typical Toronto Star fashion, finds the most interesting point about the tournament is it’s in Toronto:

You try to drop a major golf tournament into the middle of a relatively quiet residential area near the heart of a major North American city and see how the folks really like it.

RBC Canadian Open tournament director Bill Paul’s found out what sounded like a great idea in theory — bringing the $5.1 million (U.S.) event to St. George’s Golf and Country Club in the Islington and Kingsway neighbourhood — is becoming something of a “challenge” in reality.

“When I first started this process, the first public hearing I had was in 2007 and there were probably 50 people that showed up (and) thought bringing the Open here was a great idea,” Paul said at a news conference Tuesday to set up the July 19-25 event. “You had one guy who was a ‘soft’ complaint to one we did two months ago where I sat for three hours and everybody wanted to rip me apart.

The Spectator’s Garry McKay highlights Mike Weir’s feelings about the field:

Mike Weir was impressed.

Canada’s top player on the PGA Tour said he was “blown away,” by the strength of the field for the July 19 RBC Canadian Open.

“You’re never going to have all of the top players but we have a very competitive group of players here,” said the 40-year-old Bright’s Grove, Ont., native yesterday at a press outing at the St. George’s Golf and Country Club to promote the country’s major golf tournament.

The National Post confirms— yawn — that Tiger Woods wasn’t among those announced as coming to Toronto. Shocking. This story has been written over and over and over… and I think writer Jeremy Sandler corrects Bill Paul’s grammar.

The Canadian Open released its early list of committed players for 2010 and Tiger Woods was once again not on it.

And if the world No. 1 has as long a memory for perceived slights, it could be a while following a little off the cuff humour from Canadian Open tournament director Bill Paul on Tuesday.

“Having walked two holes with Tiger at The Players Championship, I think we’ll have the premier players here,” said Paul while addressing a question about the field for this year’s tournament at St. George’s Golf and Country Club. “He wasn’t hitting it very well.”

Of course given that the scandal-plagued Woods last played the Canadian Open in 2001, a year after he won it at Glen Abbey in 2000, perhaps Paul knows there is little risk what he says might move Woods one way or the other.

The Globe’s Lorne Rubenstein writes about the field. The headline asks “Can a tournament sparkle without stars?” Love a headline that has nothing to do with the story — which is really about the lack of Woods and Phil Mickelson and whether they matter in the greater scheme of things. Or as Rubenstein says, “Those stories are easy to write.” Take that National Post.

So, could the Canadian Open be considered a premier event without the presence of golf’s royalty, tarnished as they are for the moment? The question is fair, if dated.

Weir said that sure, while the tournament would like to get Woods and Mickelson from time to time, no tournament except the majors gets all the big names, or all of the golfers ranked in the top 50 in the world. He indicated that he feels peeved and aggrieved when he watches a PGA Tour event and the so-called experts focus on only those golfers everybody knows–Woods and Mickelson above all.

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Jeff Lancaster

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1 CommentLeave a comment

  • hahahaha…Thompson taking shots at The National Post.

    Now THAT’S breaking news! (insert sarcasm face)

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