Caddie blog: Chun’s first-round recap

Eric Chun was paired with Zach Johnson and Martin Kaymer for the first two rounds of his first British Open.

Eric Chun was paired with Zach Johnson and Martin Kaymer for the first two rounds of his first British Open.

Editor’s note: Steve Bailey, Northwestern assistant coach, is writing a daily blog from The Open Championship, where he is caddying for Northwestern junior Eric Chun.

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I can’t tell you how excited I am for Eric to tee it up today! I am equally excited to hear Ivor Robson (the long-time British Open starter) announce his name.

In his high-pitched accent: "From South Korea ... ERIC CHUN"

Even though Eric’s tee time wasn’t until 2:43 p.m., my day started at 5:15 a.m. The R&A allows caddies to head out on the course before play begins to take a close look at hole locations. It was very entertaining to watch 100 caddies scrambling around, pacing off numbers, carries and slopes on the greens. It really showed that this is the biggest stage in golf and that players and caddies were going to do whatever it takes to be prepared.

photo

Eric Chun shot 1-under 71 in his first round at St. Andrews.

I made my way to the house so I could catch some of the TV coverage before heading back to the golf course.

I couldn’t help but to laugh as I walked in the front door and looked at all of our wet clothes sitting on a drying rack in the kitchen. It was reminiscent of my mom’s clothes line from the 80s.

We watched a little golf, got dressed and for the fifth day, made the walk through downtown St. Andrews and arrived at the Old Course.

After some food, which included my 21st & 22nd crème brules, we headed to the range, did some good short game and yes, it was time to head to the tee.

Nothing like playing in your first major at St. Andrews with Martin Kaymer and Zach Johnson, the 13th- and 18th- ranked players in the world.

The two guys, along with their caddies, couldn’t have been nicer guys and they really made Eric feel comfortable. Zach is a big Iowa Hawkeye fan and we talked plenty about Big Ten Football.

Now the time has come! Kaymer and Johnson both tee off and pure it down the middle. Chun, steps up like a seasoned veteran and stripes 3-iron down the right center and sets up an 88-yard wedge shot to a front-middle pin. With a steady breeze in his face, Chun nestled up his approach to 12 feet.

Didn’t I just mention this is a Major Championship with a stadium full of people on both sides? Well, apparently it didn’t seem to phase Chun, he drained a 12-footer to go 1-under thru 1.

First Major, first hole, first birdie….Seriously?

As the day got going the weather gradually worsened and I reminded him to focus on the things he could control. He would go on to post a 1-under 71 and currently sits in 59th.

Gotta get some sleep and take care of those hole locations again tomorrow morning. Thanks for following.

Go CATS!

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