The fourth and final major of the year is upon us, as the UK will host its annual event.
The 2023 Open Championship will take place across four days between July 20 and 23, as the world’s best golfers will descend upon the Royal Liverpool Golf Club for the 151st edition of the competition.
The tournament is steeped in history, with a number of iconic moments having happened. Various courses have been used, although this year’s event will be the 13th time it has been played at this particular venue. With 13 being an unlucky number for many, golfers will be hoping that this is a lucky omen for them.
What are the Key Dates and Format for the 2023 Open Championship?
A total of four rounds and a minimum of 72 holes will be completed between July 20 and 23 in order to determine who will be corned the winner of the 2023 Open Championship.
The first round will be played on July 20, with the second round following on the next day. These rounds are scheduled to feature a field of 156 players, although this will be whittled down for the final two rounds that will take place on July 22 and 23. In order to make the numbers shorter, there will be a cut-off point that will be in place. This will depend on the leader, and then those that fall below it will be eliminated, whereas those who are on or above the cut (including ties) will progress to the weekend.
If, at the end of the final round, there are two players or more on the same score tied for the lead, a playoff will be held. This will see golfers play holes in order to determine a winner. The player to hole in fewer shots will win and become the 2023 Open Champion.
Who are the Favorites to Win the 2023 Open Championship?
With around $3 million being allocated of the total $16.5 million prize pot to the winner of the competition, there will be many that will be gunning for the final major of the year. While there is no doubt that winning an event as prestigious as this is satisfying enough for the champion, the winner’s check can be a nice bonus.
The 2022 edition of the event saw Cameron Smith be crowned the champion, as the Australian managed to shoot a score of -20 around the Old Course at the legendary St. Andrews, Scotland; a course dubbed “the Home of Golf” as it is thought to be the oldest course in the world.
The Royal Liverpool represents a different challenge for this year’s participants, and the Australian is not expected to be retaining his title. According to the betting odds, he is currently valued at +1,600, alongside Brooks Koepka. The odds appear to favor Rory McIlroy, with the Northern Irishman priced at +750 and just ahead of Scottie Scheffler (+900) and Jon Rahm (+1,100).
Will McIlroy be Able to Win the 2023 Open Championship?
Given that McIlroy is the current favorite to win the 2023 UK Open Championship, there will be questions about whether he will be able to. He does have a history with this event when it was held in this course.
McIlroy – who is the current World No. 3 in the golf rankings – won his last major tournament at Royal Liverpool back in 2014 by two strokes with a score of -17, defeating Rickie Fowler (-15) and Sergio Garcia (-15). It marked his third major championship, and he would go on to claim victory at the PGA Championship that same year, but he has no other majors since.
Some critics argue he has managed to return to his peak form over recent years, and there is much enthusiasm surrounding his chances in this upcoming competition. He knows the course well and should receive strong support from British fans present; additionally, his golf has been of high quality as he competed competitively in two majors, including finishing second at last month’s US Open one shot behind winner Wyndham Clark with an astounding score of -10.