• Open Championship

Fans hushed after Tiger complaint

ESPN staff
July 18, 2014
Tiger still draws the crowds

Spectators at The Open have been told keep their mobile phones quiet and stop taking pictures after Tiger Woods complained about distractions.

The Royal and Ancient (R&A) issued a statement after the first day with the former world No.1 having reportedly shouted his annoyance at ringtones and the click of pictures being taken during his opening round.

"We urge all spectators to keep their phones on silent and remind them that taking photographs on championship days is not permitted," Johnnie Cole-Hamilton, the executive director of championships, said.

The R&A outlawed mobiles on the course after Woods complained at the same Hoylake course eight years ago but the ban was scrapped in 2012.

However, it is clearly an issue that still rankles with the American. "People were taking pictures - like we had it all day today," Woods said. "There was a lot of cameras out there. We were backing off a lot of shots and a lot of people moving around. It was tough. Unfortunately people just don't put their phones on silent or some of the professionals guys were getting on the trigger a little early.

"I've had numerous years of dealing with this. There's a lot of moving parts out there. And you've just got to stay focused and plod my way around."

Woods headed to the practice range after his opening round on Thursday, something seen as a positive sign after he carded a three-under 69 in his first major championship of 2014.

There were no ill effects from the back surgery he had in March that caused him to miss the first two majors of the year and he claims he will get stronger as he pursues first day leader Rory McIlroy and the championship progresses.

Although he recently questioned the swing changes Woods has made over the years, ESPN analyst Paul Azinger said on the air that there were a number of good signs. "He's been pin high all day [with his approaches]," Azinger said. "It's been a pleasure to watch."

But there is still plenty to work on. "Pretty much everything," Woods said. "I need to get everything a little bit better. That's the case all of time, anyways. But at Congressional, I made just some terrible mistakes mentally. My decisions weren't very crisp and I wasn't decisive enough. Today was totally different. And consequently I shot a better score."

The Open is Tiger Woods' first major of 2014 © Getty Images
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