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AIG Women’s Open: Muirfield finally opens its doors and welcomes historic women’s major | Golf News

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The women’s major season reaches its climax this month, with extended coverage of the AIG Women’s Open live on Sky Sports Golf

The women’s major season reaches its climax this month, with extended coverage of the AIG Women’s Open live on Sky Sports Golf

At long last, Muirfield welcomes the world’s best and brightest female players to its shores as the AIG Women’s Open makes its bow at the historic links.

Besides marking the first time a women’s event has been hosted at the East Lothian course, it will also be the first major event for men or women to be held there since Phil Mickelson won The Open in 2013

A prolonged delay stems from an effort to admit women members to the male-only Honorable Company, having been rebuffed in 2016. The decision drew strong criticism from First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon and other local MPs at the time, before the R&A removed Muirfield from The Open rotation.

Highlights from Anna Nordqvist's final-round 69 at the AIG Women's Open, where the Swede claimed a one-shot victory at Carnoustie

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Highlights from Anna Nordqvist’s final-round 69 at the AIG Women’s Open, where the Swede claimed a one-shot victory at Carnoustie

Highlights from Anna Nordqvist’s final-round 69 at the AIG Women’s Open, where the Swede claimed a one-shot victory at Carnoustie

Upon a second poll within the next year, 80 per cent voted in agreement with the admission of women members to pave the way for this summer’s event.

“It’s great. I think the ladies should be on rotations that we play on,” said 1995 Open winner John Daly. “These golf courses that we play and they’ve played the British Opens over all these years, it’s kind of almost a home, especially with six or seven of eight of them in Scotland.

“I know they don’t want to go back, but it would be great to see Turnberry again on the rotation. What daddy (Donald) Trump has done to that place, I heard is amazing. They’ll enjoy it. Muirfield is a hard golf course, but it’s fair. They’ll enjoy it.”

Former world No 1 Ernie Els added: “Obviously a great venue, wonderful history. Great to see the women playing at Muirfield. It’s wonderful to see them play there. That’s one of my favorites obviously. Obviously this one and Muirfield and Lytham, they stand out for me.”

Anna Nordqvist arrives as the defending Women’s Open champion after beating Georgia Hall, Madelene Sagstrom and Lizette Salas for one stroke at Carnoustie last year. Scotland’s own Robert MacIntyre is well tuned to the history of Muirfield, and enjoyed success there in 2015 as he won the Scottish Amateur.

“Muirfield is a great place for myself. I won the Scottish Amateur there a few years ago. It’s such a great golf course, I think it had to open up to the world,” he said. “I think it had to get on terms with the world, life, by allowing women into the golf. You know what, they’re going to get a treat when they go there and get to compete on such a great golf course.”

“I see them performing extremely well. They would play the golf course exactly the same way we would. I’m sure their tees will be positioned accordingly for them to be able to have the same level of test, with cross-bunkers that have to feed it around some of them. I think it’s great. I think it’s wonderful they get the opportunity to play certainly the venues that we play on, on a strong links test.”

Ian Poulter on the Women’s Open being held at Muirfield

Former Masters champion Danny Willett believes it would “be harsh” were the world’s best ladies golfers never to experience Muirfield in their career.

“Golf’s a real old game, and there’s still a few traditions in there that will change over the next decade and I’m sure they’re trying to change and now obviously playing at Muirfield,” said Willett. “That place is a fantastic golf course.

Live Women’s Golf

August 4, 2022, 11:00 a.m.

live on

“We had great fun when we played The Open there when Phil won. It’s a phenomenal golf course. It’s nice they got the opportunity, and they’re going to get a great winner there.”

Tommy Fleetwood has backed the women’s field to fare well in the face of notoriously challenging links conditions.

“I don’t think they need advice from me. They’ll be just fine. But you go there and you do your preparation. And like a lot of links courses, you keep it in play, try your best to keep it down the fairways,” I explained. “Don’t press too hard and try and let the score come to you. But I’m sure they don’t need my advice. They’ll be fine.”

Daly meanwhile warned of the wind that will pose tests across the course, which will play to a par 71 and measure to roughly 6,680 yards.

“Muirfield off the tee is a lot tougher because you’ve got both sides you’ve got to worry about,” said the 56-year-old. “Like I say, you can hit it left here all day on the front. You can hit it left on the back and most of the time you’re good.

“But Muirfield is different. It’s a different golf course. And the winds can really just blow your mind there. So you’ve got to be careful with the wind at Muirfield. It can switch in a heartbeat.”

Live Women’s Golf

August 4, 2022, 11:00 a.m.

live on

Els said: “Just the piece of property is amazing. You’re right on the water, but you don’t have a hole that’s on the water. Every single hole goes a little different direction, and the course is the way the members play it. There’s nothing tricked up. It’s just what you see is what you get.”

Fleetwood has hailed a “great time” for golf in Scotland and the country’s “amazing courses” amid a run that includes the Scottish Open, The 150th Open, the Seniors Open and now the Women’s Open, with the Englishman backing his compatriot Hall to add to her 2018 title.

Georgia Hall showed off her ball striking prowess, hitting her ball exactly 150 yards in the Open Zone challenge!

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Georgia Hall showed off her ball striking prowess, hitting her ball exactly 150 yards in the Open Zone challenge!

Georgia Hall showed off her ball striking prowess, hitting her ball exactly 150 yards in the Open Zone challenge!

“You go with the times, don’t you? And I think I’ll look forward to watching the women’s open at Muirfield. I really will,” he said. “It’s a great golf course and it’s a championship-level golf course, and I’m sure I’ll enjoy watching it.

“If I went with my heart, it would be Georgia [Hall to win] because she’s always up there in an Open and she’s doing great. I know her quite well. Anna won it last year, right? So she’s the defending champion.

“There’s a lot of great golfers, and then you look at the major champions this year. It could be – I think the strength in the women’s game at the moment is – it’s similar to ours, really, like once you turn up, there’s a long list of players that can do well and can go and win.

Watch the AIG Women’s Open live from Muirfield on Sky Sports Golf. Live coverage begins on Thursday from 11am!

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