Chris Wood

The young Englishman has played two Opens and starred at both – narrowly missing out last year.

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When the tall Englishman qualified to play the 2008 Open at Royal Birkdale as an amateur he knew he had a choice: he could spend the week playing as an Open tourist seeking glory groups during the practice days or he could prepare to win. He chose the latter course and finished fifth. Twelve months later, having turned professional, he travelled to Turnberry and repeated the trick, except on this occasion he very nearly made the play-off. Only an adrenalin-fuelled nine-iron of over 200 yards (“I’ve never hit a nine-iron that far”) which went through the 72nd green prevented him taking on Watson and Cink in extra holes. Asked if he should be considered a contender again this year, his response was immediate: “Yeah.” One thing you can be sure of is that Wood will prepare himself thoroughly and leave nothing to chance. Oh – and he can play links golf. In fact he loves it.