Colin Montgomerie relishing return to Royal Troon for The Open
Last Updated: 07/07/16 9:21pm
Colin Montgomerie hopes to make the most of home advantage when he features in The 145th Open next week at Royal Troon.
The former Open runner-up will make his first start in golf's oldest major since 2010 - having previously made 21 consecutive appearances in the tournament - when he features in South Ayrshire from July 14.
Montgomerie will enjoy familiar surroundings at Troon, where he is an honorary member and his father, James, previously served as club secretary.
Although Montgomerie is playing down any chance of claiming a long-awaited maiden major title this week, he is confident of putting his home knowledge to good use.
Speaking to Sky Sports News HQ, Montgomerie said: "It gives me a slight advantage, having a little bit of course knowledge and being comfortable in that surrounding, but at the same time it does put a little bit of pressure on as well.
"Having said that, the expectation goes up because you feel you should be doing a little bit better than you might otherwise be.
"The greens are fairly flat but they're small here, so you've got to find the fairway then strike the ball well.
"You've got to look at Jason Day, Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson as favourites this week, as they're all ball strikers and Troon is a ball-strikers course.
"To be competing against the young guys less than half my age is difficult now, but if you're not playing then you can't win - so I'm going with that!"
Montgomerie secured his first major start of the year by coming through qualifying at Gailes Links in June, finishing third after rounds of 66 and 71.
The Scot ended in a tie for 25th when the tournament last came to Troon in 2004, as Todd Hamilton claimed victory, with Montgomerie now looking to play well at this week's Scottish Open ahead of having one last chance to impress on his home course.
"In 12 years' time, when it comes back to Royal Troon, I'll be 65 and well gone from the game," Montgomerie added. "So this was my only opportunity to try and qualify.
"Everyone knows what this tournament is about and how much it means to us all, especially British golfers playing at the Open.
"I just scraped in by one shot, but that's expected in qualifying where things are tight and there's 72 players fighting for three spots available.
"I'm delighted to make it here and I'd love to make the cut and play on Sunday."
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