Graeme McDowell has withdrawn from a Final Qualifier for next fortnight’s Open Championship after Air France lost his clubs on route from Paris to Mancherster.
Graeme McDowell / Image from Getty Images
As reported earlier yesterday by Irish Golfer Magazine, McDowell arrrived at Manchester Airport early Monday morning after contesting last week’s French Open. However as he and his caddy awaited their luggage McDowell clubs were nowhere to be seen.
McDowell then tweeted his disgust at 5.48am from Knutsford as he was making his way to Old St. Annes, one of four courses playing host to Final Qualifying.
The Old St. Annes Pro Shop was contacted just after 5pm and advised McDowell’s clubs had not arrived and he was walking the course while he also elected not to hire clubs.
Of course, it was a horror scenario for McDowell who was looking to secure one of the three spots on offer into the July 19th commencing Open Championship at Carnoustie and after failing to qualify a year ago, the former U.S. Open winner was desperate to return to contesting golf’s oldest major.
But at 10.30pm (UK/Irish time) McDowell tweeted:
‘I have officially withdrawn from @TheOpen qualifying tomorrow at St Anne’s Old Links. I cannot give 100% without my own equipment which has been mishandled by @AirFrance and must turn my attention to @DDFIrishOpen this weekend. Thanks for all the support.’
Sixteen minutes later he tweeted:
‘Lots of you wanting to know why I don’t grab a set off the rack and give it my best shot to get in @TheOpen. Of course I could do this, but wouldn’t be firing on all cylinders and there are 6 spots up for grabs next 2 weeks at @DDFIrishOpen and @ScottishOpen.’
McDowell will head to Ballyliffin on Tuesday to begin preparations for this week’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Open where the top-3 finishers, not already exempt, will earn Carnoustie tee times. He also will have the same scenario when he heads a week later to Gullane for the Scottish Open.