THE morning after the night before – or the week after in this case. It was always going to be tough to follow the 2014 Ryder Cup, as it was for Gleneagles to follow Medinah, but the competition has managed to attract four members of the victorious European Ryder Cup team which should boost ticket sales and interest.
World No.1 Rory McIlroy, Martin Kaymer, Victor Dubuisson and Stephen Gallacher will stay in Scotland with their captain Paul McGinley and vice-captain Padraig Harrington – whether they have a clear head and can put a decent round together is another issue.
If that wasn't enough, superstars Ernie Els, Louis Oosthuizen, Charl Schwartzel and Colin Montgomerie will also be plying their trade this week.
The Alfred Dunhill Links has two competitions running side-by-side, with the pros competing in a 72-hole strokeplay format while a pro-am takes place which sees the lowest score between a professional and his amateur partner scoring on each hole.
Like kids in a candy shop, the players will compete for the first three days over St Andrews’ Old Course, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns before those who make it to the final day battle it out on the Old Course.
Defending champion David Howell won in 2013, his first European Tour title for seven years, following a tense playoff with Peter Uihlein which came to an end after two holes.
Celebrities playing: Hugh Grant, Damian Lewis, Greg Kinnear and Kyle MacLachlan, rock legends Don Felder, Huey Lewis and Tico Torres and many great sporting idols including Sir Bobby Charlton, Johan Cruyff, Sir Ian Botham, Shane Warne, Brian O’Driscoll, Sir Steve Redgrave, Tim Henman and Damon Hill.
When: October 2-5
Where: Old Course St Andrews, Kingsbarns and Carnoustie
The Course: Par 72, 7,279 yards. Par 72, 7,150 yards. Par 72, 7,412 yards (corresponding with above).
Defending champion: David Howell
Thursday – Sky Sports 4 from 1pm
Friday – Sky Sports 4 from 1pm
Saturday – Sky Sports 4 from 1pm
Sunday – Sky Sports 4 from 12.30pm
Rory McIlroy 4/1
Martin Kaymer 14/1
Shane Lowry 20/1
Charl Schwartzel 20/1
Victor Dubuisson - 22/1
Danny Willett - 40/1
Brooks Koepka - 40/1
Marc Warren - 40/1
Stephen Gallacher - 40/1
Eddie Pepperell - 50/1
Robert Karlsson - 66/1
Pablo Larrazabal - 80/1
Winner to be a member of the European Ryder Cup team - 19/10
Odds courtesy of 888Sport