MOORTOWN’S Nick McCarthy is taking a week off from the EuroPro Tour, giving himself time to reflect on his Open debut at Royal Birkdale last week.
McCarthy missed the cut after rounds of 74 77, but was able to take away plenty of positives – as well as a fund of memories.
His dad Dave, a former Yorkshire county player, caddied for him and the walk up the 18th together in the second round is certain to stay with them both.
“It was absolutely brilliant. Obviously I wanted to do a lot better, and it’s a shame I didn’t, but I loved every minute of it. It was fantastic,” said McCarthy.
“It’s a seriously demanding course and there was no room for error. If you were off line by a few yards or so with your shots into greens it was so punishing.
“I was quite happy with my long game, but it was around and on the greens that I struggled.
“I struggled with the pace. They were 10 (on the Stimpmeter) and they were running smooth. They were beautiful surfaces, but on the first day I struggled, I lost the pace and the feel a bit.
“The wind was brutal on Friday and a lot of it was crosswinds – and then you’re trying to hit putts allowing for gusts, so it was difficult.
“But I loved it, it was absolutely brilliant.”
He and girlfriend Nicky spent Saturday watching the golf and were on the clubhouse terrace on Saturday to see history being made as South Africa’s Branden Grace completed his 62, the lowest score in men’s major championship history.