Golf great Greg Norman wants to play British Open

·2-min read
Greg Norman last played the British Open in 2009, and has not played a major since that year (AFP/Mike Ehrmann) (Mike Ehrmann)

Golfing great Greg Norman intends to come out of retirement and compete at the British Open in July, a report said Saturday, with the Australian saying: "I love St Andrews."

The 67-year-old, a two-time winner of the Claret Jug who has recently been spearheading a proposed Saudi-backed breakaway Super League, has not played a major since 2009.

But he wants to return for the tournament's 150th edition, to be held at the Old Course at St Andrews in Scotland -- considered the home of golf.

"I'm filling out the entry form now. I think I'm going," he told News Corp Australia newspapers.

Whether he tees off or not is still to be seen. Norman will either have to battle through qualifying or seek a rare special exemption, given he is over the cut-off age of 60 for former champions.

He believes he has a case.

"I think I can still get in," he said. "It's the 150th. I'm a past Open champion. I love St Andrews.

"If... I would consider going back and teeing off one last time, maybe this is it."

Norman -- nicknamed the "Great White Shark" -- played the last of his 27 British Opens in 2009. He won in 1986 and 1993, and posted 10 top-10 finishes in all.

Hugely popular in his heyday, he has become a polarising figure more recently as chief executive of a breakaway league funded by Saudi Arabia that is intended to rival the US PGA Tour.

The new league hoped to lure top players, but a string of the world's best have opted out, with Norman accused of turning a blind eye to human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia. He rejects that claim.

"We are here to play golf, serve fans, grow the game, and give additional opportunities to players," Norman told News Corp. "Golf is good for the world and that includes Saudi Arabia."


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