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Harrington's hopes lie in swinging mid-60 scores

Two-time Open champion Pádraig Harrington admits he will probably have to shoot three rounds in the mid-60s if he is to have a chance of claiming a third Claret Jug.

The Dubliner shot a one-over 73 in ideal scoring conditions on the first day at St Andrews, leaving himself already 10 shots behind leader Rory McIlroy.

"I did all the superfluous things well and all the important things badly: you have to hit your wedges close and hole your putts and I did neither of those things and paid the price," said the 38-year-old.

"I was treading water while everyone else was going forward. All day nothing was happening for me.

"I probably need three rounds in the mid-60s between now and Sunday. I also need to get the right side of the draw. I know the leader is also on my side but I need to play 72 holes. I don't have much chance if I don't get through tomorrow but I wouldn't be unhappy if it was sunny tomorrow afternoon."


You would think after successfully handling the pressure of a play-off at Turnberry last year to win his first major that defending Open champion Stewart Cink would be up to picking his own clothes.

Apparently not. The American was asked whether he was superstitious and would he be wearing lime green as he did for the final round 12 months ago. "Kermit green we call it, Kermit," corrected the 37-year-old referring to the character out of the Muppets. "No, I'm not superstitious in any way. And because I'm a Nike player, they lay our clothes out for us Thursday through Sunday, so that was their scripting for the week. My scripting this Sunday doesn't include lime green."


Despite the benign conditions there were a few duff shots on the first day. Two-time Open champion Pádraig Harrington's short pitch to the first hole ended up in the Swilcan Burn - much to everyone's surprise - on his way to a double-bogey six.

But England's Oliver Wilson went one better, as he explained on Twitter: "Shot 68. Relatively pleased considering I won the prize for dumbest pro. 1st tee shot in the burn, Say no more ..."