Royal Lytham falls short of the Top 10

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This summer’s Open Championship venue, Royal Lytham & St Annes, may have fallen just short of the top 10 courses in Great Britain and Ireland, but it remains one of the toughest courses around the world.

Surely then, there is no better venue to test the likes of Luke Donald, Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods than when the Lytham course hosts the Open Championship this July.

In 2001, David Duval lifted the esteemed Claret Jug aloft at the Lancashire course – his only major championship to date - and we wait to see whether another maiden Open champion could be crowned.

However, the course has changed over the past decade with the added addition of new back tees and bunkers providing a different dimension.

The links course now boasts over 200 bunkers and is, surprisingly, the only course part of the Open Championship rotational system that begins with a par three.

The late-great Seve Ballesteros triumphed twice in the Open Championship at Royal Lytham & St Annes and there is a nostalgic sentiment attached to the course that attracts golfers from all over the world.

And rightly so.

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