The Open Championship is underway at Royal St George’s club in Sandwich in Kent. It was an emotional moment on the first tee when Richard Bland teed off for the first shot played at the Major since Shane Lowry holed out in Royal Portrush in the summer of 2019.

The best golfers in the world, barring those who are missing through Covid like Masters Champion Hideki Matsuyama, have come together for the final major event of the season and if anything like the previous three it will be compelling viewing.

32,000 fans each day are being allowed onto the course which will give it a good atmosphere and the tournament will be broadcast in full here on Sky Sports.

For those glued to the shots, there will once again be an opportunity to ‘play’ the course in the second edition of the e-Open which will be played on screens through the rest of this month and into August.

Qualifying rounds run to the 15th of August, with knockout rounds from the 17th to the 19th and the Grand Final on the 20th.

It is run on the online World Golf Tour by TopGolf and is sponsored by Mastercard.

The initiative was played for the first time last year in the absence of the real event. It attracted an entry from 145,000 players from 125 countries around the world.

Prizes will include tickets to attend the 150th Open next year at St Andrew’s.

“Esports continues to grow in popularity and be enjoyed by gamers of all levels all around the world,” said John Espley, Head of Commercial Partnerships at the R&A.

“Open to everyone, the e-Open gives golf fans a unique opportunity on a global platform to tackle the unrelenting challenge at Royal St George’s against other gamers, for a chance to be crowned champion.”

 

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