Stuart Franklin/Getty Images
By Ryan Herrington
The R&A finally made official on Monday what everyone basically understood: the Open Championship will return to the Old Course at St. Andrews in 2021 as part of the celebration of the championship’s 150th playing.
This breaks from the recent timing of Opens at St. Andrews, which had been occurring every five years starting in 1990. But the six-year gap from Zach Johnson’s triumph in 2015 until 2021 was only appropriate given the expected pomp and circumstance that will go with marking the Open’s historic anniversary.
This will mark the 30th time the Old Course has held the Open.
“St Andrews has produced a revered group of outstanding champion golfers since the Open was first played on the Old Course in 1873,” said Martin Slumbers, the R&A’s chief executive. “Once again we look forward to seeing the greatest players take on the challenge of the world’s most iconic links course in their pursuit of the Claret Jug.”
Specifics on how the R&A will choose to honor the 150th playing of the Open are still being worked out.
An Open at St. Andrews brings with it traditionally the largest crowds to see the championship with more than 230,000 fans attending for the week in 2000 and 2015.